“To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best day and night to make you like everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight and never stop fighting.” ― E.E. Cummings
On my last day of student teaching, another teacher sent this quote my way. It's stuck with me over 10 years later. It's a quote I've shared with my students and it's a quote I try to live by. It's also a quote that represents education.
Within my current field in education, there is a push to keep up with the latest trends. This is what drives us to improve education, but it is also what divides us. When I go to conferences, check Google + and Twitter, I am hit with a desire to try everything I see. I want to do it. I want to be it. This drives me to improve, but also makes me compare myself to those I should use to better myself. It also makes me lose sight of who I am what I can bring.
As educators, most of us what to improve. Within the edtech/innovation sector, we are competitive. We drive each other to improve. But, we can also drive others to burn out. I speak from experience. You can only "keep up with the Jones" for so long until you lose some of the passion that set you on your journey. So, I remind myself of this quote to keep myself grounded. I remind myself of what my passion is.
We need to use our network to build us up and contribute to our network with our own unique passions. We don't need to do it all. That's what the "world" is for. However, we do need to find what makes us, us. We need to thrive in this. We need to wear it with pride.
This quote has changed its purpose throughout my educational career, but it is what grounds me. It's a reminder that we each have a role to way - one that is unique to us.
What quote - educational or not - empowers you?