Although I didn’t blog about it, I did choose One Little Word at the beginning of 2017. My word was lighten.

I chose LIGHTEN for several reasons and for many of the different meanings of the word.

I wanted to lighten my loads… I tend to overthink and overdo things. I spend AGES searching for the right font and the exact right word. While I revel in these types of things, they don’t do much for my overall schedule. I spend way too much time planning and thinking, and not enough time doing. It was a goal to lighten my expectations on myself so that I could lighten my workload and hopefully, my outlook. You can read more about this from Matt Miller and Angela Watson, if you’d like.

I also wanted to be a light by bringing positive energy wherever I go and lighten the path for others who may need it.

So… LIGHTEN. That was my word.


It didn’t seem to fit. I struggled to feel at one with the word. (To be honest, I struggled with my FOCUS last year, but it was a fruitful struggle, I feel. And I did make some progress on it.)

And, then there was this new word. I’d seen it when it became a hashtag, but that isn’t when it stuck. I had seen it when I ordered some stuff with the word on it, but that isn’t when it stuck. It was after thinking about my relationship to learning and how I feel driven to find information to back me up.

I realized that there will always be challenges and obstacles in my way. There will always be people who don’t believe it can be done, or don’t see that value in doing it differently. There will always be push back.

And that’s ok.

It isn’t ok that I allow those things to stop me. Should they cause me to communicate my vision and purpose more clearly? Yes. Should they cause me to think deeply about what I’m doing and my motivations? Absolutely. Should they cause me to rethink and reshape my actions to make them better? Always. Should they hold me back? Never.

I have to find the courage to keep moving forward. Yes, with evidence and research backing me up, but also with my own convictions. I’m a pretty smart lady…most days…and I know this. For some reason, however, I often doubt my own ability to be a credible source of intelligence. It’s time that stops.

I have a pretty good idea what’s best for the learners I teach. I have a pretty good idea what’s best for me. I have a pretty good idea of what could be possible in schools.



There will be people who doubt me. Nevertheless, I will push on with what I think is right. There will be challenges and obstacles. Nevertheless, I will keep fighting for what’s in the best interests of kids.

This will be terribly hard for me… For a million reasons.




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