A foxhole is a hole in the earth that is used by a soldier as a small fort. From the safety of a foxhole, troops are protected somewhat against enemy fire.
An administrator I work with said to me "You are the person I want next to me in the foxhole. You get it." I really appreciated this compliment because the people in your foxhole (aka work, school, and life) should always lift you up and protect you from the enemy. The enemy in this case being people (‘negative nellies’ or ‘emotional vampires’) that inevitably take you off of your ‘A-Game’ and prevent you from accomplishing your priorities and ultimately your vision. My focus is to always uplift others, inspire those around me, and encourage everyone I know to step outside of their comfort zones to achieve their goals and vision.
Don’t let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace. ~Dalai Lama
I get it. Everyday is a battle. It takes a special kind of vigilance to protect your space, your time and your emotional and mental energy. It comes down to one question - Who do you want in your foxhole? Who is there fighting beside you, day in and day out, side by side making the world a better place? Who is there beside you positively influencing the world for a better tomorrow? Those are your people! They are your troops. Those people are your tribe…protecting each other from the harshness of the world and lifting each other up to do powerful and inspiring work each and every day.
Sometimes our paths cross people that make other people less productive, less happy, off balance and ineffective. It’s the way they roll. All. The. Time. All the time! Are they stealing the time you need to fulfill your vision? Are they costing you your personal time and space? Are they disrupting your inner peace? Have you noticed that there are people in your circle consistently starting problems, bringing people down, decreasing productivity of their colleagues or being a free-loader while you do all the work and take all the heat?
Those aren’t the people you can count on to be in your ‘foxhole’ day in and day out launching ‘positivity grenades’. Unfortunately some people will infiltrate your foxhole, where you are doing the good work, and the hard work, that must be done. These individuals, though small in numbers, proliferate negativity and toxicity. Don’t let the emotional vampires infiltrate your foxhole. Minimize interaction with people who are taking you off of your ‘A-Game’ and try to limit involvement with the one or two percent of people who make your world and specifically your work and school community less positive. You are a positive and productive leader and quite simply the other 98% of ‘your people’, the ones with you in the foxhole, deserve your time and attention way more.
Who are the people you can always count on to support you? Who is standing by your side fighting the good fight? Who is launching positivity and love grenades with you and making your world and school a better place?
Celebrate them and focus on the good in the world. Celebrate growth, kindness, teamwork, and a solutions oriented mindset.
I believe in recognizing people who inspire others and I would love to hear from you about the people who are in your foxhole. Email me your stories of support at [email protected] and put Inspired Educator in the subject line.
If you want to learn more about living in the "Positivity Zone" celebrating the people who support you and the 5 Powerful Practices Model created by Lisa Imel, M.E.D., Join her for Reclaim Your Joy! Lab and create your own plan to reclaim the joy in your life! Learn more at: Reclaim Your Joy! Lab!
Lisa Imel, M.Ed. is the Founder and Chief Educational Consultant of the EDSolutions Group where she serves as a school strategy consultant, digital course creator, leadership coach, and more! Lisa specializes in Human Potential, Workforce & Economic Development, and K-16 Education Strategy. Through her work with school districts, colleges and secondary and post-secondary leadership partners she develops business community partnerships, ideates, creates and implements systems and structures so that you can lead a more productive, meaningful, healthier, happier, work & personal life. Our work will help you have a greater impact and influence more of your students to achieve brighter futures! As a life-long educator, high-school, middle-school, and elementary administrator, teacher and licensed superintendent, she gets it. Reach out at [email protected]
Thank you for reading EdSolutionsChat (this blog) where school leaders come for inspiration!
“Education is for improving the lives of others and for leaving your community and world better than you found it.” -Marian Wright Edelman