For me, this summer has been wildly different than any summer that precedes it. I've spent every summer up until 2020 with minimal responsibilities on my plate and definitely no work unless I was working summer school.
In May of 2020 I enrolled in the Institute of Integrative Nutrition to learn more about wellness. I'd been on my own personal development journey and was finding massive amounts of success in my personal life, relationships, daily life, etc. I was experiencing a new level of happiness than ever before and I wanted to help others do the same. So I became a certified Health Coach with the intention to do just that.
Things evolved and in July of 2020 I shifted my Instagram account from general wellness to teacher wellness.
Teachers are my people and they're also a population that is incredibly overworked and undervalued. It's not enough to just tell teachers to "take care of yourself", we're tired of hearing that. We need a place to go with tools, people, support, and empowering resources that reminds us that we are human first, teachers second👊.
This past year I've balanced working as an instructional coach with creating an online teacher community. I knew I wanted to take advantage of the time off this summer and go ALL in on learning how to make a difference in the lives of teachers.
Things like mentorship, monthly meet-ups, care packages, free wellness resources, and teacher tees are my big focuses right now. If you've ever wondered what it looks like behind the scenes to make some of this magic happen, here ya go! And spoiler alert: rarely any of it is glamorous. Social media has a way of making everything (especially entrepreneurship) look effortless and fabulous. It sometimes forgets to show the time investments, pivots, challenges, and risk-taking involved.
For example, from the outside mentorship might just look like a weekly zoom session. The parts you don't see: creating the program and maintaining the program. Creating mentorship took months. Maintaining it and improving it are almost daily efforts, doing things such as: reviewing each recorded session to monitor/adjust my support, creating weekly bonus content, staying in touch with my mentees via our facebook group and email, seeking out new learning for myself, studying coaching questions, prepping for each weekly session, getting clear on my messaging and overcoming imposter syndrome when it's time to launch.
Today marks week 8 of our summer mentorship round and I'm thrilled to say that my group is thriving 💫 ! 4 more weeks left making massive mindset shifts and crushing goals with this group of #teacherbabes .
I also began sending care packages this summer. My mentor I'm working with suggested I do this and I'm so happy she did. I mean, what's more fun than giving gifts!? I've always argued that #teacherappreciation week should be every week but now with the care packs I get to actually live that out. Emailing brands to donate, addressing envelopes, keeping the stamps stocked (lol), brainstorming contents for the packs, mailing everything out. This all requires more time and effort than I would have ever assumed. But, with 50 care packs going out this month, that's 50 teachers that are going to feel a little extra loved this month. Makes it all worth it. I know one day I'll be sending 50k care packs but until then, I'll be learning all the lessons and enjoying the ride!
There's so many ups and downs I've had this summer when it comes to what I'm creating here. I value it all because I know it's serving the next step.
I've taught myself how to create a website (took me almost a year), set up my first official photoshoot, and spent large amounts of time and money in my personal growth as well as in my business. I've learned that you can easily waste 3 hours overthinking and spend an entire week working on something that you don't even decide to use in the end.
I've had days where where I'm entirely second guessing what I'm doing and days where I feel like I'm going to change the world.
Giving myself grace and finding the lessons in the things that don't work out are two of my personal goals right now. If we can't learn in every moment and if we take ourselves too seriously, then we're going to miss out on the most important part of it all, and that is, the living part. Feeling alive in all that we do.
No matter what the 'work' looks like behind the scenes, what matters most to me is that I'm making a difference and enjoying the journey while I do so.
What's your work and purpose right now? Are you making sure to have fun, learn, and grow through whatever it is?? If not, here's your sign to start :)