As teachers, we encourage our students to have a growth mindset. We don’t accept it when they say, “I can’t do this,” or “I’m dumb.” We might even encourage them to use positive self-talk to calm themselves down or boost their confidence. But do you apply the same kind of growth mindset to your own teaching? Honest reflection can help you become a better teacher, but if you find yourself feeling resigned or disheartened, it’s time to embrace a growth mindset. Daily affirmations can help you stay calm and confident even when faced with a challenging student or rough day.
I recommend recording your favorite affirmations on your phone as a voice memo, saying each one twice. You can listen to them on your morning commute, and recite the second repetition with the recording. This might feel uncomfortable at first, but keep at it! The power of affirmations is in the repetition. You can also write them on a post-it note and post them on your mirror or in your planner. Here are 10 of my favorite affirmations.
- I am a person of high integrity and sincere purpose.
- I am a competent and capable teacher.
- I treat myself and my students with kindness and respect.
- I am becoming a better teacher every day.
- I am making a difference in my students’ lives.
- The work I do matters.
- I am thankful to have a challenging and fulfilling job.
- I motivate and empower my students.
- I believe in myself and my abilities.
- I am peaceful and calm, and greet the day with ease.
For more information about cultivating a growth mindset inside and outside the classroom, read Failing Forward: How I Learned to Apply a Growth Mindset to Myself and My Students. Be sure to check out my blog, too, at Years That Ask Questions.