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Passion! What Will Lead You, To Lead Them?

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Passion! What will lead you, to lead them?

As another school year is just around the bend, I found myself in reflection on the following: "Passion! What will lead me to lead them?" I heard my dad's feint voice telling me over and over, "If you follow your passion, you won't ever feel that you are wasting a day." He said this to me as a child, as a student, as a parent, and every time I would share with him about the toils of my day as an educator, and now I reflect on these words practically every day.

Quite frankly, I have many personal passions in my life: my wife, my life, my children, my friends, my health, having fun, my pets, my children's friends, and the list goes on. And, then, I think about my professional passions, which I focus on and include many #educational issues such as: #resilience, #equity, #access for #opportunity, #engagement strategies, #inclusion, #support, #thoughtfulness, #puposeful approaches, #empowerment, and #leadership, to name a few.

So, as all of these ideas are flying through my frontal lobe, and competing for priority status within my mind, it could be overwhelming without employing strategies for reflection, self-accountability, strategizing, planning for actions, and actual follow through. I do this my by not simply hoping that I can make a difference and improve the state of these issues in the world, though hope is absolutely needed as a strategy to effect change. I do this by making a determination to actually create an impact in my world with respect to these issues, and then doing something.

Here are my examples: I think, I conducted research, I write, I speak, I engage about #resilience. I provide my mind with data regarding the lack of #equity and the importance of #opportunities for all children by reading, listening, and tracking the issue. I learn about #engagement strategies by participating in professional development, staying abreast of the latest in technology, and by communicating to those that have knowledge in my immediate circles, and through social media. Yes, a big thank you to #twitter, #Facebook, #linkedin, #instagram, and to those that seek to share ideas through these alternatives.

I am focused on listening, watching, and learning all of the time. I work to be #inclusive in my work place, remain committed to opportunities to learn about people, and strive to offer #support when I can to all. I work hard to be #purposeful in my words, actions, and deeds, to make a positive difference, and to not place any boundaries in front of others. I seek to #empower each person that I meet to think, to challenge themselves, to build a new skill or reclaim an old one, to take that step towards personal fulfillment, and to make decisions that positively impact them and those in their worlds. Dear reader, I seek to #lead!

Now, I say all this, not to receive a pat on the back, though that would be #awesome! I say this as a way to continue to challenge myself with the aspiration of striving to truly become this person. For the cumulative effects of being this person to those I am passionate about, and improving the work that I am passionate about and focused on is the goal! If I were to be this person, if I were to strive to become this person, if I am able to get one step closer to being this person, then, I have to believe that the world of others just might be a little bit better, and truly, what loftier goal is there?

So, now, I ask you to consider: "Passion, what will lead you to lead them?" Are you a child, a student, a parent, an educator, a committed individual who wants to change the world? What is your passion? How are you living it? How are you striving to become who you want to be? How are you strategizing and implementing the actions that are part of your goals, you plan, your life? Who is it that you will lead to a better place? And, should you continue to wait to plan, or get started becoming who you want to be?

Caution now, as there is no need to eat the whole apple with one bite! The journey to becoming you, and following your passion, is a trip to be savored one bite at a time. Your steps are each important, and need to be recognized as part of the approach to who you will become. Yet, you do recall that this is a one-time ticket to your life, right? So I truly hope that you make a decision to take that step, think consciously about what you are passionate about, plan just one step, and get moving.

@ResiliencyGuy AKA Dr. Rob, Robert A. Martinez, Ed.D., is currently the Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources for the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District. He presents and engages on the importance of "Transformational Resilience" and seeks to build the capacity of those he meets to support the development of #Resilince for all children. Follow him on @Twitter as @ResiliencyGuy or @DrRobM_FSUSD, or on Facebook as "Resiliency Guy"

Sometimes, You Just Need to Breathe

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Spring, 2017, Sometimes, You Just Need to Breathe

Sometimes, it’s about being present in your world, and offering support to those that need it without hesitation!
Sometimes, it’s taking a moment to see the love that is in your world and making a decision to give love back to the world!
Sometimes, it’s facing a small issue that has held you back, and making a determination to persevere, that leads to massive growth!
Sometimes it’s about appreciating the life before you, recognizing that each challenge of the past led you here, and moving ahead!
Sometimes, it is about hope, belief, mindset, that help build your goals and passions. Don’t underestimate your human potential!
Sometimes, it’s not just about checking off boxes in your plan, it’s about taking a step, re-evaluating, and then stepping again!
Sometimes, it’s about taking off the limits of the world, and recognizing that every successful person is a human being like you!
Sometimes, it’s about giving trust to those in your world, so that you free yourself to grow and expand your perspective!
Sometimes, it’s about persistence, seeing the future you, and knowing that you have the power to become who you want to be!
Sometimes, it’s about igniting a passion deep within yourself, or others, so that their light within becomes a palpable guide!
Sometimes, it’s about providing others with the skills, tools, insight, to empower them to face their challenges with gusto!
Sometimes, it’s taking on a huge challenge, one step at a time, with dedication and focus, to conquer the world.
Sometimes, it’s about letting your passion soar, unleashing the burst of ideas within your head, and about hoping to connect with another person.
Sometimes, it’s about listening to your heart, mind, and soul, and you simply have to know that you made the right choice.
Sometimes, you simply need to breathe, be #mindful, and be you.
Sometimes, you might need to give yourself a good swift in the behind!
Sometimes, you need to #TakeAction right now, and don’t wait for the perfect time, because the perfect time may never come.

Dr. Robert A. Martinez, is becoming wel-known as @ResiliencyGuy across California. He focuses on building environments where children can learn and grow in peace. He speaks on Transformational Resilience, a concept that focuses providing thoughtful systems that seek to engage and support each child in their learning. You can follow him on twitter @ResiliencyGuy and @DrRobM_FSUSD and on Facebook as “Resiliency Guy.” 

#POWERFUL words, #POWERFUL choices, #POWERFUL actions! Find your words to become a #Learner, #Leader, #Lifer!

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Each of us is on a journey; a journey towards self-discovery, self-improvement, self-awareness, and hopefully self-actualization. While we are on our individual journies I believe that each of us has the capability to choose the words that guide us as we head towards our personal destinations. I believe that we have a responsibility to be thoughtful about those choices, and that we can effectuate positive changes in our worlds and the worlds that those we care about. I believe that if we do this we can all become expert #learners, #leaders and #lifers. Meaning, those that choose to learn, lead others, and appreciate each moment that lif has to offer. 
I bring this challenge to you to focus on the words that can support you on your journey. This challenge would be to take a look at the picture below that contains a number of words that I have dubbed #POWERFUL words, and to make some choices for yourself. Choose the words that reflect who you are as a #POWERFUL person. Maybe you are a #learner, a #leader, or a #lifer, like me, or maybe you are simply seeking to be a little better than the day before, or quite possibly you are seeking to change the world with your magical powers. I think that no matter which level your journey is on that you can choose to make it a #POWERFUL one by forcusing on the words that give you your internal power.


For me, my current set of words includes: #Positive, #Outstanding, #Wise, #Empowered, #Resilient, #Forthright, #Unbelievable, and #Loving. Let me explain:
#Positive: Each moment of each day I choose my attitude. I choose to be positive, to look on the bright side, to relish the good that occurs in front of my eyes, and then I seek out the good that might go overlooked. Sometimes its the simplest of actions that people, I don’t even know do, such as holding a door for someone, or picking up a piece of trash that lays before them, to witnessing the engagement of an exceptional educator who is guiding the development of a group of students and educators all day long. 
#Outstanding: As I maneuver through my day I seek to be a shining light to those that might catch a glimpse of me in action. Not that I need to be the star of the show, but it’ that I feel a sense of responsibility to seek to be my best for the people I serve. I strive to give others an authentic look at how I go through life with what I hope are exceptional behaviors, actions, and positivity. I want to get that smile from an onlooker. I want to include people in my life. I seek to engage, and be present in what I hope is a memorable way towards the good.
#Wise: I have had the opportunity to learn many life lessons, to become a learned man, to build a set of skills that guide my decisions and actions. I learned these things from life, from my parents, from those in my lives, from my teachers, from my colleagues, my children, and if I don’t act with regard of these lessons that I have learned, then I think that I wouldn’t give justice to these life experiences. I want to be thoughtful, be cognizant of the intelligence I have, use it for good, and allow my thoughts and actions to demonstrate who I truly am.
#Empowered: It is my life. It is my choice. It is my heart, mind, and soul, that creates me, so it becomes a real action to be empowered through myself. If I were allow myself to be only directed by others, would that be enough? If I allowed myself to be swayed one way or another because of popular belief or persuasion or group mentality, would that be enough? I think not! To be empowered is to be aware, to know you have choices, then to choose consciously, and to let yourself recognize that you have independent thought and have acted on your own accord.
#Resilient: If you know me at all, you know that at my inner core, the issues of resilience ignite my life. Having the capability to come up against adversity, then to battle, fight, overcome, be the relentless individual that I can be, to persevere through any hardship that presents itself, is truly a learned skill set that I use each and every day. I also seek to help others recognize that they too have experienced resilience, and that each of our minds are afforded opportunities continuously to overcome the roadblocks paced before us. This power word is essential to my and my development, and for me represents a deep commitment to living.
#Forthright: While there is always the need for tact and courtesy in providing information to people, especially information that might not be seen as positive to all ears, none of us have time to beat around the bush or to engage in miscommunication about important issues, topics, concepts, or with feedback that is designed to improve the lot of children, their parents, or those that work to build communities. So, to me, I feel a need to know my stuff, to know my positions, to know what I want to have occur, and then to work to communicate effectively with those that have interest or motivation to make things better. I find that by being thoughtful in my approach I am better able to hold crucial conversations with those in my life.
#Unbelievable: Our world is filled with common and general experiences. Going to get gas in our cars, stopping by the grocery store to pick up a few things, or maybe even making a quick pit stop on a long journey to take care of business, are several of those common experiences. I want to give people an unbelievable experience when I am with them. Maybe it’s with my greeting, maybe its my customer service, maybe its just offering a warm hand to shake, or possibly its by exceeding someone’s expectations in a meeting, offering just a bit more that they were thinking our conversation would provide to them, or by busting out in a little song to lighten the mood. It isn’t always about showmanship, but the style in the show that you decide to provide.
#Loving: I care about people. I truly want each person to succeed in their lives, and and I strive to be a loving person in my interactions with others. I love having an opportunity to work with people, to communicate with others, and to work in the education arena, where what we all do on a daily basis matters, and supports our shared future world. I love my family, my friends, my career, and my life. I love it! I am a #LIFER! What I mean by this is that I work to focus on the precious moments that I am given, and value the good and difficult moments that occur in my day, and I hope that you will join me in loving your life.
The beauty of engaging in a process such as this and reflecting on the #POWERFUL words presented in this challenge, is that you do not need to choose my words! You can choose your own. You also do not need to choose words that I have provided as you can add your own. Your choice, your power, your actions, your opportunities to grow yourself, and then your opportunity to work to build the #POWERFUL attributes in each person that are in your world. Think about it, if each person you know actually focused on choosing their words, and enhancing their powers, then worked to build themselves up, and then focusd their energies to build the powers of others in their worlds, then we could actually instigate a dynamic change to our collective world by simply building on the super powers we all have to improve the world! 
Rob Martinez, Ed.D. is known as @ResiliencyGuy and AKA @DrRobM_FSUSD on twitter, and can bfound as “Resiliency Guy” on Facebook. He is becoming well known for his presentations on Transformational Resilience across California, and serves the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District as the Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources. 

#TRANSFORMATIONAL #RESILIENCE AND YOUR PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

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Tonight I had the privilege of presenting the concepts of #Transformational #Resilience to my  colleagues from  #ACSARegion17 Association of California School Administrators in Anaheim. Each time I have the opportunity to share my ideas, thoughts, concept, and perceptions on #resilience development I learn something new about myself, my thinking, my beliefs, and I try to share the ideas and concepts that are swirling around in my mind in a coherent manner so that those that have committed some time to come and hear me receive a benefit that they might not have otherwise have received.

The attendees tonight included teachers, site administrators, budding administrators, educators of all kinds, who at their hearts care about children. In my talks I often share a bit about myself, my early development, some of the trauma that affected me in my early development, and how the process evolved to allow me to face the many early adversities that I endured to become the educator that I am. I then go through a process that seeks to allow the participants to reflect on their personal development. I ask questions about their stories, their families, their teachers, their experience, as a way to assist them in connecting with some of their personal stories that are meaningful to them, and to some of the stories that they might have forgotten about themselves.

I think that for educators to advance their knowledge and understanding of #resilience for others they must first think about the ways in which they themselves have been resilient. Yes, sometimes I believe that people forget. They forget the adversities that they have endured. They forget the hardships that they have been through. They forget their personal development, and what has brought them to this moment, and I believe that as they remember they actually become more able to be able to #connet with their students, their teachers, their staffs, and those that they work with on a daily basis. The process is easy for some, and more difficult for others. I think it has to do with several factors. 

If we suppress some of the difficulties that we have endured as children it is more difficult to call those incidents to mind. If that trauma, adversity, or hardship was never really dealt with it might also be difficult to manage years later. This is absolutely normal as our brains seek to protect ourselves from these difficult times, and yet, if we don’t remember, I think that we might not be as attuned to ourselves as we need to be to be able to then consider how our children may be suffering in silence. Tonight a few folks assisted me in a simple rope trick to test their #resilience, and they struggled to be free. Like these simple ropes trauma ca bind children’s mins, and stifle their resilience. 

I believe that when we are better able to consider our personal development, when we are able to recognize what and how we have overcome our adversities, our personal #resilience becomes more real in our minds, and I believe we, as educators who care for children, are then in a better place to support these children. One day, I hope to show you the secret to the ropes, and ease your mind.

Each child, each moment, each opportunity, each #asset that we can impart to our children, each collaborative moment that we can build together – yes, it all matters! I believe that each one of the attendees tonight is a special individual. I believe that each person who attended tonight’s presentation is on a unique personal journey towards educating children, the adults in those children’s lives, and each other. I believe that you, if you have taken the time to read this blog post is also special and unique, and I hope that you consider just how special you are, and that you also consider how important it is for you to work to build environments where all of our children can grow in peace.  

Tonight I’ll close this blog with this quote: “Let the life we help our children live be the measure of our success.” I’ve said this many times, and tonight one of the attendees shared that this really impacted her thinking. I was humbled.  

In these times others will seek to tell us if we are effective or not, and yet, it is our hearts, our minds, our souls that will truly tell us if we are being effective in the work we do that seek sto engage others in building support for al of the children in our lives.

Dr. Rob Martinez, AKA @ResiliencyGuy is the Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources for the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District, and co-moderates #Resiliencechat on Monday nights on #Twitter. He is passionate about building opportunities for children to develop #reilince skills, and is working on his book #TransformationalResilience.  

#STRIVE To Foster Resilience In Our Children

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In these times of unrest, turmoil, and struggle, our brains might consider that the work we do as educators is too difficult, too exhausting, possibly unfulfilling, and/or that we simply can’t meet the needs and expectations of everyone who has an opinion about education. Well, rest assured that there is hope, there is a way, there is light that will brighten the next day, and there is you. You, the one with an unwavering passion to do what is best for the children you aim to serve. I know it, I believe it, and I want to foster that passion in you.
I simply ask that as you get up each morning, as you contemplate the next child you will encounter, be it your own, or the child of another, and that you #STRIVE to foster resilience in that child. “What does this mean?”, you might ask. Well, it’s a pretty simple acronym for approaching your work! #STRIVE “#Serve, #Teach, #Relate, #Inspire, #Value, and #Engage. Let me explain, just a bit more:

#STRIVE

When we #STRIVE to foster resilience in this manner we take control of the things we can control. We focus our energies on improving ourselves, and allow our hope, our light, our energy to seize the day. We target and use strategies that will build resilience in children, and align our thinking with the needs that are presented for us. Simply #STRIVE and you will get and keep your groove. Simply #STRIVE and you will re-ignite the passion that for your work, which is your life, which is where your hope evolves. Simply #STRIVE and success will come to you.

#SERVE

#Serve:  Focus on and commit to provide and deliver service to all stakeholders that are part of your community, especially students, their families, the community that they live in, and any and all collaborators that are part of your system of support. As we deliver this service to others quite frankly the gains in our hearts, our minds, and our souls are priceless to our existence.

#TEACH

#Teach:  Teach what is needed by your children/students. Target Social Emotional Learning and compassion and understanding of others. Teach them to think critically, to use resources and technology, to stretch theirs, their friends, their group’s thinking. Teach them to communicate, to collaborate and be a colleague, and to accept differences of opinion and perspective.

#Relate

#Relate: Connect to them through Relationships, Resilience, Responsibility, Resources, Relevance, Resolve, and allow your relationship with them to resonate to have meaning, to propel their desire to connect with others so that they can add meaning to their lives. When people connect by way of mind, thoughts, feelings, souls, and yes, even physically, the human experience becomes much more powerful and meaningful. By being people first, then student and teacher, parent and child, the relationship becomes all the more important to both parties.

#Inspire

#Inspire: We often diminish the impact we might have on people, yet, when asked to think of someone who inspired you, you more than likely would think of a teacher, a parent, yes, another human. So, consider how you might inspire each person you connect with to advance their skills, talents, for the benefit of themselves and their community. As an educator I suggest using innovative approaches to do it. Use thought-expanding, creative, inclusive lessons, and engagement strategies to connect with and expand upon student’s ideas, ingenuity, thoughts, interests, and motivation. you do have the power, you are human, and you can inspire others!

#VALUE

#Value: I think Michelle Obama said it best, “Value everyone’s contribution, and treat everyone with respect.” When you demonstrate and respond to the value that each person brings to our world with due respect for their differences and personal perspective you provide a safe place for them to grow. By valuing the differences that inherent in each person, and by accepting the unique offerings of each person, without judgement, you further demonstrate that you don’t measure someone’s worth by your values, and that you simply value them. By demonstrating that we value each person, we teach that valuing each person is an abundantly better strategy to our children than devaluing people.

#ENGAGE

#Engage: Take steps to understand the interest, motivation, needs and desires of the children that are in your world. Build your skills to inclusively connect to each person that should be part of your learning community, and bring them into the fold into order to demonstrate your passion and commitment to each person within your community! When we have one, ten, twenty, or more individuals engaged in thought, activity, creative efforts, whatever, not only do we build the skills of each, we provide opportunities for synergy to occur. Breakthroughs do not usually occur in a vacuum, they often occur when ideas are colliding, when exponential growth is allowed to exist, when energies are high, and risks are occurring in a safe zone. Be engaging!

Commit to #STRIVE

My dear colleagues, as I conclude this blog post I ask that you #STRIVE to foster resilience. I ask that you commit to yourself and your development as much as you commit to your children/students. I ask that you #Serve, #Teach, #Relate, #Inspire, #Value, and #Engage the children/students in your life, because you and they are more than worth it!
inspire
Dr. Robert A. Martinez, “Dr. Rob” is known far and wide as @ResiliencyGuy on #Twitter and #Periscope. He is the Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources for the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District, and has focused on #Resilience development for a number of years. He seeks to build an understanding of #TransformationalResilience and how each educator and parent has an important role to fill in the development of children.
You can follow him on linked in as “Robert Martinez, Ed.D.” on twitter as @ResiliencyGuy on Facebook as @ResiliencyGuy and on his blog resiliencyguy.wordpress.com

Seeking Balance, and Allowing Resilience to Lead You Forward

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When stress and anxiety are provided a window of opportunity into your heart, mind, soul and body, they quickly focusing on creating imbalance in your world in order to be able to invite their close friends depression, anger and frustration to the party. Seeking to find and keep your balance, and allowing your resilience to support you in moving forward, are ways to limit these windows of opportunity that tend to pull us even farther off the balance we seek.

Is there a sure-fire way to avoid stress, anxiety and their friends from attempting to tilt you over? Of course not, and yet, if you take action on several or all of these steps to build your resilience skills you will be better able to walk tall, keep your alignment more steady, and ward off these mental beasts that seek to tear you down.
A few simple excercises to stay in balance:
-Be thankful: Yes, be aware of what has been provided to you, what you have access to, and that you can use to take care of yourself. Be it food, shelter, clothes, or even crumbs, consider that you have something. If you have family, loved ones, a job, a place to call home, a place to visit, you have something to be thankful for, and 
-Be kind: Taking a moment or two to provide an act of kindness, to care for someone else, or to provide something to someone that needs a pick-me-up.
-Be active: By getting your body going (walk, jog, run, ride, bend, stretch…) you inform each and every cell of your body that you are alive. You let your whole system know that this life must be lived, that you want to be part, and that you are readying yourself for your next great adventure.
Be present: If you work, be at work, and take care of the things that work calls for without allowing yourself to be engaged in, for lack of a better word, “DRAMA” that pulls you away from your work. If you are at home, be at home, be there for those that need and depend on you, yes, that is your life, these are the people you love, and they deserve the very best of you each opportunity you have to be with them. By being present, you remain an active part of your life, their lives, and show them the way to engage, stay in control, remain calm, fight your way through, and to be ready for a new day! 
Build your skills: Personal, professional, creative, or even athletic skills must be targeted and focused on. If you recognize you should, and want to improve in a given area, you must put in the work to advance your skills. If it’s by becoming a better person, well, maybe you start by reading a little blog such as this, or it’s by taking a class, or it’s just by having a conversation with someone you know. If it’s professional, again, focus on the area of need, target that specific skill set you have identified, and get yourself going. If you want to develop a new part of yourself, there are literally millions of ways to “Google” it, and then take action. It is your life, you are the lead of your own show, and you can modify the script as you see fit.
BOLD CRAZY SENTENCE: You, are only the you, you believe yourself to be, and if you want to be a new you, well then identify a path, take a step towards your journey, and seek to become the new you you long for!
Here’s hoping that you each find your balance, that you seek to engage in being: thankful, kind, active, present, and that you build your skills accordingly. While I can’t guarantee that the stress and anxiety won’t be able to find you if you engage in these behaviors I can tell you with assurance that you will have more skills at hand in your resilience tool kit if you do, and that you will be more able to right yourself should you feel yourself tilting one way or another.
So, with that, Happy Thanksgiving to each and everyone, and I do hope that you reflect and plan on bringing the best you to each and every day. Remember, some of the best days of your life may have not happened yet.

 
Dr. Martinez is the Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources for the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District and is also known as @ResiliencyGuy on @twitter. He can be found on Facebook at “Resiliency Guy” and is Co-Moderator of #Resiliencechat that occurs each Monday, at 7:00 PST on @Twitter 

#Resilience Chat with Crystal Middle School Students, 10/28/16

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Had a fantastic opportunity to share some thoughts about #resilience with some of our students at Crystal Middle School.

Some of the audio quality is not the best here, however I think that some of the video segments are pretty good examples of connecting to students, and that I was able to connect with them about what #resilience is all about.

I presented them with the concept that adversity comes in all shapes and sizes, and that I believe that if they have more #assets in their control that they will be better able to get through any roadblock that gets in their way.

I targeted four areas of development: #academic focus, #value development, social #competence, and #self-#empowerment as ways to build their personal #resilience skills.

I am hoping to hone this type of presentation, and I seek to reach more and more of our students, and possibly students across the states.

Let me know what you think.

Dr. Rob Martinez is the Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources for the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District, and is known as @ResiliencyGuy on twitter, and throughout northern California. He is focusing more and more on sharing his knowledge on #resilience development with both #educators, #Students, and our broader educational communities.