A few months ago I read Jon Acuff’s book Finish. The book is about what it takes to finish your goals and what keeps us from finishing. The first chapter of the book shares a great concept that I think is important for educators to hear. In the book, he talks about the day after perfect and the difference it can make between those who quit and those who finish.
When I first started teaching every day I told myself that my class that day was going to be amazing. I would spend a lot of time planning and get ready for a lesson that I was sure was going to be a hit….reality is sometimes they were hits and sometimes they were duds. If you have spent any time working in education (or really any field) you probably know the duds I’m talking about. The ones that make you question why you are doing what you are doing. It is at this point that we have to make a decision. Ignore the one bad day and learn from it OR quit. Sadly too many people quit because they believe that they are not living up to the standard that has been set by other educators at their school or on social media. Acuff argues that instead of quitting you should acknowledge that you are not perfect and then start over again. You will never finish anything if you allow perfection to stand in the way.
This is something that I find myself having to remind myself about. There is always tomorrow and tomorrow brings an opportunity to start a new streak of awesomeness. Don’t let perfection and this false image we have created with social media of what it takes to get good demoralize you. Education is a very personal journey and everyone’s journey will be different. Don’t let the day after perfect keep you from taking this journey.