Friday, May 1, 2015

A lovely exercise #7wordstory by Catina Haugen

Voxer groups definitely get me thinking.  Something about the almost-face-to-face quality of conversation.  The almost-real-time of dialog.  It's an amazing format for growth, reflection and discussion.

One such interaction recently challenged our group to tell our #7wordstory.  David Culberhouse got us started, "In Jeremy Gutsche's Exploiting Chaos he shares that people are remarkable better at remembering messages conveyed in 7 words or less... so, what are your 7 words?  How do you convey your story in 7 words?"

Rebecca Davis was quick with her response, "I jumped in and kept on swimming."

And from there we got going.  I hope others share their #7wordstory here.

For me, I turn to the ocean.  Immediately.  For a myriad of reasons it is my place, my calm, my rejuvenation.  Probably true for many people, my heart calms, my mind clears and my smile always returns at the ocean.

So my #7wordstory followed...

It was a beautiful day with my two boys at Doran Beach near Bodega Bay.  The three of us often trek out to dig a hole, take a walk or picnic.  My husband hates the beach.  He can't stand wind (too many years in North Dakota) and just won't risk it.  Funny enough, we always score a beautiful day when we head out without him.  Hhmmmm.

So this photo was one such amazing beach day.  My more contemplative son, Josh, starring out at the surf, barely wetting his feet.  I love this picture of him.  And the clouds.... oh my... there just aren't words.

My work as a leader in education fits these three roles perfectly.  When we're knee-deep in SBAC testing and people just need to feel safe and secure as we enter the known, I am a lifeboat.  When students feel unsafe or shaky ground and I come alongside to reassure, problem solve and empower, I am a lifeboat.

Buoys... they chart a path, mark boundaries, alert us to shallow water or danger... I do that too.

And of course a sail.  A sail is about movement, steering a course forward, taking a whole boat and crew in a direction, together.  Who doesn't need a sturdy sail to keep the work positive, inspiring and motivating?  I do that too.

Is it always successful? No.  Is it always in the right direction?  No.  But these are the roles I aspire to fill.  I work hard every day to be better.

It feels good to capture my story in this succinct, visual manner.  Like a successful mission statement, it sticks.  I believe it.  I live it.

And if I'm going with an ocean theme, no one wants to work with cement shoes or a tsunami.  That would be a completely different blog post.  Yikes.

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