Saturday, December 01, 2007

Adaptability Theme

I am now discovering my third theme, which is Adaptability. Like my previous post on my Communicator Theme, I haven't felt successful at adapting to my new school. This reality has brought me to a better understanding of my top five themes. While all five of these talents simmer below the surface, I must choose to foster and develop them.

The Future-- is not set in stone. The Adaptability Theme means living in the present.

As a teacher, the Adaptability Theme best presents itself in my awareness of the teachable moment. Sure, I can have objectives and goals, but for when the mood strikes, I don't "...resent sudden requests or unforseen detours." Instead, I "...expect them."
I recall my days before teaching, when I was bartending for Red Robin. I thrived when the unpredictable happened. Maybe my cocktail server went home because of slow sales, only to have the bar full moments later. I was in my element.
I don't believe in fate. I believe that I have control over where I will go, and though I want to get somewhere specific, that could change based on the events of tomorrow. That doesn't frighten me. Instead, it makes me feel oddly secure.

Ideas for Action: (suggestions for the Adaptor)
1. Cultivate your reputation as a calm and reassuring person when others become upset by daily events.

Personal Response: Earlier this year, a fellow teacher had a terrible experience late in the day. Her students were cruel and out of control. Without hesitating, I stepped in front of the class and slowly brought them out of their frenzied state. I remember the rush I felt standing in front of those students just before I began to talk. I craved the opportunity to adapt. Strange.

2. Avoid roles that demand structure and predictability. These roles will quickly frustrate you, make you feel inadequate, and stifle your independence.

Personal Response: This idea cannot apply to me any better. I hate predictability and too much structure. I love a framework, but not an detailed plan of action. The only problem, today's teacher is rapidly losing independence.

My Adaptability Theme, though not my top theme, is the one I consider my most important. When others tense at sudden changes and unpredictable happenings, I run to them. This ability provides me with opportunities to stand out, something I enjoy.
But I must be aware that structure is essential in its place. I cannot allow my need for controlled chaos bore me. Because when I am bored with my job, I am not very good about staying focused. As a teacher, that would be devastating to my students.