1. Teacher Life

3 Questions to Help Find Your Flow

Over the last couple of years, I have transitioned this blog from something I write for others to something I write for myself. It is not that I am not trying to provide value for others but that I feel I give the best value when I share the things that are either I am most passionate about at the time or what I am struggling with. 

The thing I know about writing in that way is that I will always find people who need what I share when I am sharing it. It might not be for everyone, but it could be for someone.

So here is what is going on today as I write this post. I have lost my mojo. And the word “mojo” to me will always be linked with Austin Powers.

YARN | My mojo. I'm useless without it. | Austin Powers: The Spy Who  Shagged Me (1999) | Video gifs by quotes | 2aef4581 | 紗

But I can’t peg what is going on right now. I can’t point to some existential crisis that I am dealing with. I am just off, and by writing about it, I hope to figure some things out. So here are the things that I am trying to do to help me figure out what could be wrong and maybe how I can get back on track.

1. Check in with yourself. Are you doing what you want to be doing? 

One of the best feelings that I have had in the last little while was when I was speaking at an event. I was in the middle of my talk, and everything was flowing. I just felt this feeling of, “This is what I am meant to do!” There is no better feeling in my work, and there are days when I don’t feel that. 

But there are days, more often lately when I feel I am just going through the motions of my work. Never when I am speaking, but in other small elements of my life. I know that I am blessed to do a job that I genuinely love, but it can’t be that 100% of the time. There are challenging moments, and that is okay. 

I have been asking myself lately: Do I need some professional change, or are personal elements of my life weighing on my career?

I honestly don’t know the answer, so I think it is essential to consider the question.  

2. What are the habits that you can count on? Are you sticking with them or are you straying away?

So when I am off, I can tend to stray away from the habits and systems that worked for me and veer toward the habits that caused issues (emotional eating is one of those things!).  

Once I start to feel that I am getting bored with my routine, I try to figure out, “How do I keep the routine while changing a part of what it looks like?” For example, if I spend a certain amount of time doing cardio exercise each day, should I maybe take a break from running and play basketball or some team sport at the same time of day? Those changes can stop you from plateauing even when you are consistent with a routine.

The same thing is true for professional habits. One of the reasons I moved to podcasting was that I loved sharing my thinking, but blogging became something I began to dread. I now consistently write a couple of times a week, but I have created a routine of podcasting and talking to others that have replaced some of the posts I would typically write in a week. This has helped me keep up with the big habits while tweaking what the routine could look like.

So the thing here that should be considered is what has worked for you and how can you tweak it to keep up with a productive routine? 

This leads to the last question.

3. Ask yourself in what ways can you “disrupt your routine” to create some positive change in your life?

One of my favorite quotes is, “to innovate, disrupt your routine.”  There is this balance that I always consider about sticking with what works while also ensuring that sticking with something too long can also make me stagnant. Over the years, I have watched people on different mediums jump from one platform that has brought them success (Vine, TikTok, etc.) to something where they can change their approach but build a new audience (YouTube, Substack). There is something interesting about people jumping from one platform to the other a little too early rather than too late and how that decision is made.

Personally, I have left jobs that I loved for new opportunities. Not because I was bored but because I felt I could see the potential to become stagnant. I have also left jobs that I have hated, but that is a much easier jump to make.

But making that early jump can be scary. I guess I have been more scared of making the jump too late.

In one district where I worked, I had a job that I liked, but my ambitions for my career and the perception others had of me did not line up. This is probably because my enthusiasm for the job was much different later (it was more) than initially. People saw my work’s beginning version when I knew that I had evolved to something different.  

I needed a fresh start to see if I could live up to the perception of where I could go in the eyes of others.  

Here is something I believe; change happens whether it is done to you or by you. The latter option is a space where I feel I have more control over my own fate.

Has writing this out helped me to recapture my mojo? Not really. But it has helped me to reflect and figure out some changes I need to initiate. Writing to learn has always been a process for me that can lead to action from thoughts. If I don’t process my thoughts, the steps will never happen.

Whatever direction your life takes, your underlying themes remain. Discover and explore ...

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