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We all have those times where we find ourselves upset, and that’s when the knee-jerk reactions kick in. But, have you ever taken the time to decide how you will calm yourself to the point that you can offer a thoughtful response instead? Maybe it’s time we all give the idea some thought. The habit of a negative response I remember, as a teacher and then a principal, there were …

What are your thoughts as you witness another school year coming to a close? Has the year been everything you’d hope it could be? What changes would you consider? Ideas to improve school culture To ensure that the school atmosphere is one that encourages not only academic success, but also stresses social-emotional growth, consider the positive results that such an emphasis would create. Having an attitude of perseverance and grit …

Shawn Achor, a well-known Harvard lecturer, happiness researcher, and TedX speaker, says we’ve got it all wrong. Typically, the world seems to hold as true the notion that our reality shapes us; what we’ve achieved or have determines our levels of happiness. But, according to Achor, this isn’t true. Rather than our reality shaping us, it’s the lens through which we view our reality that really has an impact on …

Happiness has become such a large part of today’s daily conversation that it actually has its own day. Like, literally. And internationally. The International Day of Happiness is scheduled for March 20 and there’s no time like the present to start planning. Organizations are making arrangements, thinking of a multitude of ways to spotlight the day and, at the same time, hoping that one day of happiness turns into many, …

Harper, an 11 year old tennis player, was the focus of her family’s decision to try establishing a mindfulness practice. The family sat through lessons together, asked questions, and learned about mindful listening and breathing, body scans, and mindful eating and walking. They also talked about ways to use the mindfulness practice during tennis matches, situations where it could be applied, and how it could be used for the parents …

The elections are almost upon us and this round of debates and reporting, in case anyone hadn’t noticed, seems a bit different from prior years. Since 1960 when John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon participated in the first televised debates, the candidates, their political parties, and the American public, came to realize the potential impact. Typically a time to learn more about the candidates themselves and their opinions regarding various …

Pop artist Meghan Trainor gives me hope. As a songwriter and singer, she has chosen to immerse herself with songs and lyrics that reflect a positive attitude, acceptance of oneself, and a spirit of hopefulness. Never do I associate her with a sense of hopelessness, or a willingness to accept the status quo, especially when she knows, almost instinctively, that we can expect more of ourselves and one another. We …

Memories, having the power to remind us of the times in our life’s experiences, can be wonderful. They may also take us back to events that we’d like to forget. But, considering how often our minds replay those memories, it may become apparent that it is not the recollections that are so vividly recalled, but the emotions they evoke. The thrill of an exciting adventure, the keen disappointment when something …

This was a good week. I had introduced a group of about 25 parent educators to the world of mindfulness, and this was our last session. Over six weekly meetings I covered the basics…but only barely. These teachers were busy, let me tell you! It was their school that had volunteered them to meet with me at the end of a long workday, and, while I’m sure many were thinking, …

There are many statements I made to students when I was a teacher, and then, as a principal. Sometimes I would look back on what I had said, and feel good about the conversation because I had treated the child with respect, care, and consideration. And, then, there were the times I would consider what I had said, and how I said it, and simply shudder. How in the world …