Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Good enough is never good enough

Here's a little bit about me: I'm never really satisfied with myself.  That last run could have been faster/smoother; the last lesson I taught? Never as good as it could have been. And so it goes in every thing I do. No, this is not necessarily a good thing, thanks for noticing. As a result of this self-critical existence I do not understand the idea of "good enough." those who are simply satisfied with OK baffle me. Sure, I sometimes (more than I wish) produce work that is less than awesome. And, yeah, I may project an air of being cool with it to those around me; it's a coping mechanism. Inside, though, I am reeling with the thousand ways I could have just done x, y, or z better.

How does it compute for someone to just say "eh, it'll do?" Is there nowhere to improve?  Nothing that can be done better? I honestly want to know. I see those around me do this and it makes me want to scream. We are striving to become teachers; how can "good enough" ever be good enough for our students? We have a responsibility to leave it all on the field and give no less than everything we have to further that mission; I can't overstate that.

I know that he who is on a high horse has far to fall, and I'm not trying to be that guy. I don't find myself to be better/superior/whatever than anyone else (see opening paragraph). But here's the thing. I did not take the decision to go back to school and become a teacher lightly. Frankly, I consider it a calling and a mission. I walked away from a career with a lot of growth potential and a good income to do this.  I'm not in it for the pay, the "long summer vacation" that everyone seems to believe teachers get, or anything else like that. I'm in it because I want to educate and foster learning. As a result, I relish every chance I get to learn something or improve myself. I know I have a long way to go and more than a little to learn before I'm ready to call myself a teacher. Don't we all?

I know; at 38 I'm a little old to be so naive and idealistic. Says you. I think the world needs more idealistic naivete. So, yeah, this hasn't been the usual happy slappy funfest. Sorry, but I needed to get this out; it's been burning me up all day. Thanks for reading

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