Happy New Year friends!
Even though I’m not a big fan of the mind set that January 1st is the day to change your life, I felt like this year needed some serious closure. So I’ve come up with some Music Teacher Resolutions to take us in to 2021..
- Say no. Leave it at school, don’t adapt the new thing that’s optional, give up something, don’t take it on, walk away or do what you need to do. We are dealing with a pandemic just like everyone else and it isn’t our job to be a hero. It took a pandemic for me to realize this and while I said no last year, I’m vowing to keep that one going. When I need to.
- Find a friend. So many people revert to large FB groups for venting. Sometimes, it turns into a meltdown of epic proportions and I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. Skip it. Phone a friend, talk to a mentor, another music teacher you know personally or if you don’t know who to talk to, you can email me (use the side contact bar), and I’ll be your listening ear. Don’t do it to 20k people on FB.
- Walk away. Know when it’s time. Sometimes you will never win and it’s ok.
- Get inspired. Watch Soul. No matter what the big takeaways were depending on how you view it, remember that someone was so inspired by a music teacher that they made a movie about him. You make a difference even when you don’t know it.
- Go home on time. Seriously. I have some serious questions about being at school from 7 am until 6 at night. I used to do that almost daily. Go home.
- Make music for you. It’s why you got into this job and some of us don’t tend to nurture this enough for ourselves.
- Dump the toxic. As teachers, we put up with a lot. People who don’t trust us, people who think we take summers off, people who think we are out to get their kid, kids who won’t listen because their primal needs aren’t being met. We deal with lots of people who don’t know about our profession and think we just play around, play games, wave a stick or that they can do it too cause they like music. Never mind the training, the juries, the actual knowledge about kids voices and all the time we spent in preparation to be a teacher.
It may be hard, but ignore those voices. Boot them from your FB friends, or unfollow. Don’t spend time trying to engage, let it slip in one ear and out the other. Try not to let the negatives weigh you down. You know what it took you to get there. Try your best to kick them out, to not engage, or let it roll. Depending on who it is, you might not be able to get rid of them, but you can certainly do your best to ignore.
You are worth more than the voices trying to hold you down.
- Remember that your identity is not just being a music teacher, a teacher, or a performer. There is more to us than our career. It’s so simple as a teacher to become engulfed by giving for our students that we don’t prioritize our people. We are replaceable at school but not at home. Remember you are someone’s child, someone’s S.O., someone’s friend, someone’s parent, someone’s pet parent, someone’s call cause I miss you and it’s been forever. Prioritize you.
When I was younger, I loved reading those glossy magazines with latest fashions, and predictable articles about hair, makeup, fitness and hacks (before we called them that). I somewhere stopped buying them not because I didn’t enjoy them but because I let the career eat my life. I still think they’re fun. So I’m going to buy the magazine (or maybe the ones that are more age appropriate for me…). I’m going to not be a teacher every moment of the day. And I’m ok with that.
Happy 2021 friends