It’s only because I’ve worked in my district so long that I can write this somewhat sacrilegious post. It’s almost June and I am standing up on both feet, waving my magic wand, and declaring that it’s ok to be good enough.
For the last few weeks, I have been sitting with seniors, conducting exit interviews about their capstone projects. More than a few of them have talked about the stress of their capstone experience, how they struggled with time management, and how it took a disproportionate amount of their emotional energy. One of them summed it nicely when she said “I learned it was ok to be good enough. I had to let go of perfect.”
For those of us in our system, that can be a hard bite to swallow. By its very nature, our proficiency-based system encourages (sometimes pushes) kids to dig deeper and learn more. The “4” is always out there, dangling in front of them if only they work just a little bit harder. I’d counter that we need to tap into our student-centered side and teach not only perseverance and grit but also balance. Sometimes the 3, the “good enough” is just that. Good enough.
And then, we need to look at ourselves. How high is that standard YOU are trying to reach? Are you exhausted from trying to be better than good enough? Why isn’t “good” enough? How much better is awesome than good?
Here’s the reality- if you are honest with yourself, your “good enough” is still crazy good. It’s not substandard- its just not the usual perfectly planned, detailed and polished benchmark you set for yourself. Accept that some days, in order to find balance and maintain sanity, you’ll have to settle for the 3.
So- today- take a deep breath, acknowledge your talents and know they won’t disappear if you don’t access all of them every day. What you brought today is enough.