It's time to chase Innovation instead of reacting to the status quo.
Speed Bump or Everest?
I've been reading the book The Power of Moments by Chip and Dan Heath. There have been a ton of great quotes and insights that have jumped off the page at me. The one that has really been sticking with me though is this one:
In most every profession, there are elements of peaks and valleys. It is also very tempting to get the simple things done. But getting caught up in the reasonable can cause a loss of your challenge. Reasonable pulls us away from our passions, from the dreams that could change the world. Reasonable causes the incredible to fade away to the mundane.
To push against the reasonable, turning away from the speed bumps and toward your Everest, you must make that choice. Choose the path that you don't feel comfortable with. Choose the path that might make others feel awkward. Choose the path that can make the impact that will create the moment that will change the lives that you are impacting every day.
Choose Everest. Don't let the speed bumps get in the way, try to skip to the slow path of Everest.
I came across this quote from G. K. Chesterton this weekend:
"The vision is always solid and reliable, the vision is always a fact. It is the reality that is often the fraud".
Vision is key in most every passion that one might hold in their live. You visualize the goals that you have to complete the task at hand. You dream about the final products, what they will look like and the accolades that come with them. But what happens when we are satisfied with the vision, and the reality never comes to be? Reality becomes the fraud that there is no connection to the vision. "One day I will do this..." or "If only I had a this ingredient, then I could complete the goal".
When I think about this quote and that "the reality is often the fraud" there are any number of excuses and ideas I could drop into this piece to explain away the vision, but they all come back to fear.
So if the vision is solid, reliable and factual, then what is the fear? The fear is the distraction of other, less important priorities, time, resources, etc. The challenge is leaning into the fear in order to take a step toward the vision.
The goals of tomorrow will not come as easily as the distractions of today. Fear must be fought head-on, for the confrontations we endure, create the true change toward our vision.
Get out of our own way
How often has a student, colleague or friend said, "I can't do it"?
Within the element of our daily work, within the classroom, within the schoolhouse, these words shouldn't exist.
Education should be an environment of "let's figure it out". Not "your wrong".
The fear of failing needs to be extinguished from our hallways and our lockers. Removed from the desks that are filled each day with unlimited potential.
Step through the fear, lean into the uncomfortable, and bask in the glory beyond the veil of dread.
With each fear that we confront, we are prepared for the next greatest adventure.
Taylor currently serves as a Coordinator of Innovative Learning for a mid-sized school district in Texas. He is a speaker, writer, and coach for all who are in conflict with the status quo.