Restart

"Sleep + Restart + Shut Down" by Acid Pix. Used under a Creative Commons 2.0 Licence

“Sleep + Restart + Shut Down” by Acid Pix. Used under a Creative Commons 2.0 Licence

I had noticed a few posts recently in my Twitter feed from respected and valued people in my PLN (@ccoffa, @medg56 and @hbailie) who in an attempt to revitalise their blogging had signed up for the  #youredustory challenge.

It was interesting to read the reasons why each of them had signed up for the challenge. In considering whether or not to sign up I thought I should first reflect on why I had neglected my own blog for so long.

So, why don’t I blog?

When I created my blog, I wanted to use it as a vehicle for recording, reflecting and sharing with others. Even back then I was hesitant about the whole process.

So much (everything) we do in education is about people. What I often want to reflect on and write about relates to people and the challenges and issues I face with them. I would love to get some insight from others in how they too deal with similar situations but writing up the latest issue I had with a difficult student or a colleague who didn’t share my vision for where I thought we should be heading didn’t seem appropriate to publish in a public forum. People know where I work (or could very easily find out) and I was concerned how this would reflect on the school and also on me as a professional.

Personally, I’ve also been really tired and unmotivated. Travelling back and forth takes it out of you and there are only so many hours in the day for what needs to get done. In writing that sentence I realise it makes me sound lazy and I can hear all that positive motivational talk inside my head about having just as many hours in the day as everyone else, and saying no to things and organising what my real priorities are… It never ceased to amaze me how these incredible people in my PLN were doing all these amazing and innovative things and here I was trying to keep on top of everything I needed to do. 

Blogging was also something that I already found hard. I tend to be a slow and considered writer and it takes me ages to organise my thoughts into something logical. Many of my posts would sit there as drafts and would either go unfinished or no longer be relevant by the time I was ready to publish them. (I am already struggling to write this piece. It’s taken me several hours and I keep going back and re-reading and making changes and even considered deleting the whole post all together) Pushing blogging aside was an easy thing to do.

I usually like to take the time to reflect at the end of the year and look at what I’ve achieved and where I want to head to next. I’ve always been one to do my vision board and map out my goals but this year I’ve put this off because I really wasn’t in a positive frame of mind and wasn’t quite sure of where to next. 

In reading the information about the challenge, this stood out for me:

I have been blogging for the past two years and I struggle with feeling like I need to blog more, share more, and show more of my struggle.

So, In undertaking the #youredustory challenge I will not only try to blog more but share more of my story and my struggle.

 

8 thoughts on “Restart

  1. Margo Edgar

    Hey Scott, I relate so much to the challenge you discuss of often wanting to blog about people and the issues, challenges and successes in working with them. Like you I have often had concerns about how things would reflect on me as a person and a professional. Blogging can be very exposing. It can also be very rewarding and provide valuable insight and feedback. The challenge is finding the balance. Welcome to the challenge, another person who can give me a nudge and a push to keep persisting.

    Reply
    1. Mr Duncan Post author

      Thanks Margo – I look forward to reading your pieces throughout the challenge and discussing some of those ‘other challenges’ at TeachMeets throughout the year.

      Scott.

      Reply
  2. Celia

    Hi Scott,
    I get it ! I have many a post in drafts that I can’t or won’t publish for a number of reasons including self-editing material that should not go public) . I did find the process of writing them worthwhile.
    I am quite happy to accept that blogging is not for everyone and definitely not for all people all the time. The crux is sharing and connecting and we can make that happen in many ways and I know you do. If you choose to share your ‘struggle’ via this challenge there will be plenty of us to empathise and encourage.
    See you soon
    Celia

    Reply
    1. Mr Duncan Post author

      Thanks Celia – You’re right when you say that blogging is “definitely not for all people all the time.” Whilst blogging is great in supporting reflective practice, there are times when a public forum just isn’t the place. What is important is for people to have those other options available to reflect and share and grow; to learn from the experiences of others and share these stories in a safe and supportive environment.

      I look forward to reading your own posts throughout the challenge.

      Best of luck,

      Scott.

      Reply
  3. Kerri Flanigan

    Hi Scott, when people ask what I do I seldom say “I’m a teacher”. I instead say “I’m in the business of people”. What we ‘do’ is to teach but at the heart of it all is to attend to the needs of people, little and big. I have just started the blogging challenge myself and I agree with the other replies that it is very exposing but also a positive experience as it enables me to get my thoughts out of my head and into a forum that can only help make sense of it all.

    Reply
    1. Mr Duncan Post author

      Hi Kerri,

      Thanks for your reply.

      I’m curious to know more about why you don’t refer to yourself as a teacher when talking to others? (It could be a great future blog post if you haven’t written it already!) Have you had negative experiences with this in the past?

      I’m proud of my profession and think it’s important that we publicly promote the work we do to others. Many people have negative perceptions of teachers. (All those school holidays, you only work from 9 till 3 and you get to play with kids all day) If we aren’t own on positive public advocates I doubt others will do it for us.

      Keen to hear more of your thoughts. Best of luck with the challenge!

      Scott.

      Reply
  4. Mrs Smethurst

    Hi Scott
    I echo many of your thoughts about the issues in “not” blogging and have been nagging at myself to “restart” my own blog. This year I have a new job, a new study and a lot of reasons to reactivate my blog, especially considering the importance of reflective practice.
    I am going back to my original idea of blogging – keep it short, write regularly and write for myself first and foremost. It is fantastic if others read my writing (takes me ages and is a long considered process too – many drafts never make it to the front page) but that is not the end goal. I’m going to give the challenge a shot too. Maybe it is the motivation I need to start writing again.
    Thanks for your thoughts. I hope you have a great year and I look forward to reading more of your work.
    cheers
    Lois

    Reply
    1. Mr Duncan Post author

      Hi Lois – As a key player in my PLN who got me into blogging, I’m pleased (not sure if that’s the right word) to hear that you too have similar thoughts regarding your own blog.

      Even though the challenge is still fairly new I’m noticing it easier to focus on writing shorter pieces too. I like getting the prompt each week and I am also glad that we are getting them in advance as it gives me time to think and let ideas gel in my mind. I am also trying hard to focus on ‘just getting them done’; to not over complicate them by editing and redrafting and that by publishing more frequently I’ll find and develop my ‘writing voice’ over time.

      Congratulations too on the new job! How very exciting for you. I hope we get the chance to catch up in person soon in the new year so we can swap stories!

      Best of luck for the challenge and for the year ahead.

      Scott.

      Reply

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