Seasons change

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At this time of year when we start to notice changes from winter to spring we begin to reflect on what changes have happened in other areas of our lives. As a leader things are constantly changing and sometimes it is hard to keep up with the sheer volume of change within ourselves, our staff, our industry and Government initiatives. Maybe we should allow ourselves a moment to stop and consider things, maybe something has not been right, however we have carried on regardless. With a little pause and time for reflection we could make small changes that could have big impacts.

I recently took such a moment and decided to make a small change that I felt would be beneficial to me, two days later something amazing happened. I don’t know if that thing would have happened regardless of my change but I was able to celebrate the experience positively. Since that amazing thing happened I am seeing signs of spring everywhere, flowers starting to shoot and lighter mornings which is helping my mindset move to a more positive position. I don’t know how long I had been tied into a negative mindset but my thoughts had certainly been occupied by what I cannot do as opposed to what I can.

Change is difficult for us all and as leaders we have to deal with difficulties from a higher ground. We put ourselves in the mindset of our teams and think about what they are feeling and how we can support them through this period of uncertainty. We also however need to consider ourselves and find ways of supporting ourselves through difficult times. As I have said previously once we become leaders we have expectations of ourselves that we should know everything and be perfect from day one, believe me after years of experience I can tell you that perfection is an illusion.

I sometimes feel that the pace in which things change allows little time for reflection before something else changes. As I reflect on my situation I can see that my mind has been occupied with what needed doing, what problems needed solving and how am I going to deal with such an intense workload. I wonder how that has been coming across to my team and whether by denying myself that time for reflection was I actually failing to achieve my goal of supporting them to be secure and confidently led.

Change is inevitable, everyone experiences it differently and some people are able to embrace this more positively than others, but there is nothing more certain in life than things change.

As leaders it is time to take a moment to reflect on how you have changed as a leader, as we gain experience of different situations it does become easier, have you found telling someone they are in the wrong shop become less painful and are you more confident in making in the moment decisions? You are not the same leader you were at the start of your journey; however have you taken that moment to consider the skills and confidence you have developed?

Reflect on the people you are responsible for, have they changed, are they more confident, has their practice improved? Has the volume of trivia you were dealing with lessened? Consider your role in making this happen, things do not happen by themselves and as the leader you have contributed to the difference you can see. Give yourself credit for that, allow yourself the sense of satisfaction that you have made a difference.

Now let us consider what will be the next change you want to see, we work hard to build solid foundations however if we don’t move forward we will go backwards. What have our experiences taught us and where do we go next. The time to make that change is now, don’t put off until tomorrow something you should do today, because you never know, you might enjoy it and then you can do it again tomorrow.

About Janet Holland

I qualified NNEB 30 years ago and having spent over half of this time within a leadership role I have a wealth of knowledge and experience to share. I want to empower early years leaders to be the best they can be.

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