I recently got back from L+D's yearly Santa Fe workshop. Santa Fe is a chance for leaders to unwind, reflect, look inward, and possibly chart a new path forward. On the first day, we address ASD (Adult Seriousness Disorder). We do this to lighten the mood as often school leaders show up in Santa Fe feeling a little lost, depleted or even possibly depressed.
Even though ASD is not a real disorder, it is real. At L+D, we practice all sorts of skills and mindsets that aim to combat this very real thing where we forget the joy and playfulness associated with being a leader, but we still tend to catch some flak for it.
Carla Silver, our Chief L+Doer recently sent me this article. Published in MindShift, this article highlights a school in Los Angeles focused on human relationships. It is called Social Justice Humanitas Academy, and it as the last line of the article that got my attention. The founding principal said, "What has made us successful, and I think a lot of people are starting to listen, is the huggy-touchy stuff", he goes on to say, "The stuff that freaks people out. Adults making themselves vulnerable. Building real relationships."
The link between my reflection from Santa Fe and this article is simply that the squishy stuff is often where we find joy, connection and a way forward within the complicated and never-ending job of leading schools. Not only that, but it also works in regards to reaching students. When will we stop calling it the squishy stuff and instead call it what it really is:
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