Thursday, April 26, 2018

Take Action

In Just Talk or Tackling Tasks that Make Real Progress? Stop the Broken Record! From  Cool Cat Teacher Blog by , Victoria A Davis, Cool Cat Teacher, asks,

“What do you talk about all the time? What are you doing about it?”

When I watch the news, I hear so many people complaining about the problems in the world: nationally, statewide, and locally. Yet, I don’t see many people taking action to solve the problems. Everyone seems to be standing around waiting for someone else to take action.

I used to work for a principal who invited people to come to him when there was a problem. The one thing he asked was that when we came with a problem, we needed to offer a solution. He might not use that solution, but it helped him look for one.  This made some of us do some research and talk to others. Sometimes we would arrive at a solution that didn’t actually need his approval. This saved all of valuable time and he was able to focus on the problems that needed his intervention. I remember how smoothly the operation of the school went because all the staff worked closely together and helped each other solve problems.

Years ago I was explaining our election system and how important it was to vote in elections. Not only was it important to vote but also to consider taking a leadership position. If people complain, they need to be willing to be part of the solution and not just the problem. In order to be a good role model, I ran for public office and actually won! I served one term as a County Soil and Water Conservation Commissioner. While in that position, I learned how hard it is to solve many problems due to legal red tape. It is easy to do the backseat driving and wish that others would do certain things, but it is another to be in the driver’s seat and actually do the work.

I remember how easy it was to whine about how hard teaching was when I was a new teacher. I learned quickly that I needed to quit complaining and work on solving my problems. Most of the time, others were too busy solving their own problems to deal with mine. This only made me look like a whiny baby.

Learning to solve problems is such a self-confidence booster. I like to make sure my students know that solving your own problems does not mean you have to do it alone. Knowing when and how to ask for help is part of the solution. Too many times we all get frustrated because we are trying to do it all by ourselves. Sometimes by working together, solving problems can be easier.

Do you work to solve problems, or do you just complain about them? What do you do? Please share.

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