April 25, 2019

What is your Purpose?

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“I am a leader and a visionary”

I have had an epiphany.

I have never followed the crowd. Well that is wrong, yes I always follow the crowd – first. My initial reaction is to be part of a community, to belong. I have been doing this since I was 5 years old. I love people, I love to see them happy, so I’ve always wanted to be part of people’s happiness creation. So my initial reaction is to follow, to be included, to be loved. Like I said it started when I was 5 years old. Wearing the clothes that were “cool”, wearing my hair how everyone else did, phrases, having the best parties and sleep overs. And initially I was the popular girl. I had all the friends, I was making people happy and I felt like I belonged. Until behaviours I didn’t feel internally right with, made me question this “community”. Gossiping, bitching, exclusion of other girls etc. Then one person’s reaction (whether it is as simple as a rolling of the eyes, or not including me) – I crumpled. I gave so much “power” to others, I allowed it to determine my self worth. From 5 years old.

This pattern continues still to today. It continued throughout my whole schooling (which is why I hated school, loved learning but hated school). Happened throughout my working career. With family and with friends. And even continues as my work as a blogger today.

I am about to have a daughter, I have two sons, whilst I have tried very hard to break this cycle, I still see myself falling into it.

  • Want to be part of community
  • Succeed quickly, make friends quickly, achieve the perceived “cool” things
  • Put way too much importance on other’s thoughts, opinions, behaviours to determine my self worth
  • Start to question their behaviour, something I don’t want to be a part of or does it mean we haven’t succeeded or a good at what we do because we aren’t following the same path as someone else?

TOO MUCH PRESSURE! STOP! It is ridiculous to think, well if that person is doing it or saying it then it must be good, we are forgetting one major piece of the puzzle OUR WHY! OUR PURPOSE!

I thought I knew this, I thought I was good at this. Whilst I can clearly articulate it on paper, my actions and thoughts and reactions are doing something different.

Just before I got married, I interviewed my parents about what I was like as a child and as an adult (was going to create a video for our wedding). I’m so lucky I have this piece of recording from mum, just before she died. Mum said “Jo has always been a leader and a visionary”. She saw from when I was little and saw it as I became a woman.

I am very creative, I am a deep and analytical thinker – I am a leader and a visionary – I always have been. This is my purpose, and maybe this is why I succeeded so well as a teacher. I lead and was a visionary for children’s education. My goal was always the same – I wanted ALL children to firstly feel loved for their individuality and to see them succeed (by nurturing their strengths and working on their weaknesses). And the biggest thing? I never let someone tell me I couldn’t do it, I broke down red tapes, I didn’t allow other teacher’s to tell me that we do it this way because we have always done it this way or very commonly – one size fits all! No it doesn’t. 30 children in the classroom, you need 30 different approaches. I succeeded very quickly because at the forefront of my mind was the children, and I did anything to make sure their needs were met. And yes that meant challenging other teachers, principals and heads of departments. I didn’t have the “community” with other teachers, but I had the community with the students and their parents – and that was my WHY, my PURPOSE. The constant challenge everyday fighting for children’s rights in education took its toll on me.

So now I have this space. I have this space to take back my PURPOSE, my WHY. Today I will change, I will do absolutely everything with purpose and not because others are, or how many likes I get, or do it because it is perceived as “cool” or rely on certain people’s comments/reactions – why is anyone’s comment or reaction mean more than someone else’s? Why is someone’s “path” deemed good/successful and another’s isn’t? We ALL have strengths, we ALL have weaknesses. There is room for everyone in this world, let’s embrace our individuality and let’s do it with love.

I am going to start sharing my PURPOSE journey with you, which I encourage you to follow along, which I encourage you to use on your children and get them to follow along. I will be providing lots of tips and tricks, activities, self worth activities for you and your children, how to find your purpose and your children’s. This will be based on my training as an educator as well as my own personal journey.

So let me start with…what is your purpose? (It’s ok if you don’t know).

*If you would love to be updated when I share these resources, follow along on @storyandco and email or dm your email address and I will let you know when I have shared something new. 

love + grace

Jo 
xx

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