#VicSRCvoices: Engage yourself
We're in the depths of Term 2; workshops and leadership days have been high abundance to engage you with the school year...So what's next? It's time to engage yourself. Liang Xue from Suzanne Cory High School shares three gems that work for her.
I had the pleasure of having gems of inspiration passed onto me from a leadership conference at the start of term 1. The two speakers of the event were incredibly active students within their respective high schools, and continue to do so at university. To describe them the words: enthusiastic, hilarious and honest, pop into mind. They shed some wonderful insight into their own personal leadership experiences, failures and lessons learnt leaving us nodding attentively and laughing endlessly.
Lesson 1: Find your joy
Know what you are truly and unquestionably passionate about. When you know what that is – dedicate wholehearted thoughts and actions into it. If you are incredibly passionate about a cause, issue, charity or event, you would engage your community to feel and share your excitement and gusto. You would proceed to send a gazillion emails, cover up the nervousness in your voice when you speak at assemblies and rewrite articles for blogs/newspapers over and over.
Naturally, as time goes and plans are made, problems will arise, whether it be: not meeting your goal, the public having a lack of interest or struggling to different find ways of raising awareness. However the passion you have is more important, it shows why all the tedious and meticulous planning is worth it, and keeps you focused on the bigger picture that you are a part of.
Lesson 2: What? Who? Why? How?
It was brought up that we should take time to reflect daily, weekly or monthly, which ever suited you best. Through reflection can you engage yourself in relation to what is occurring around you, prioritise what needs to be done, and hopefully prevent feeling overwhelmed or burnt out. By asking yourself these questions does it provide a bit of a check in to evaluate what you are investing your time and energy into. While also reminding yourself about the people you want to help, and why you want to help them.
What do you care about?
Who are the people you care about?
Why do you care the people and the issue?
How do you keep yourself engaged with the people and issue?
Lesson 3: Appreciate yourself and others
The leadership positions each of us holds is malleable and every changing, each of us offers up our own unique qualities into it. Take a step back and look around in your school, community and workplace. It is far more worthwhile to value the relationships with those around you, than to be fixated on leaving behind a memorable legacy for all to remember you by (let that just be a bonus in the background).
Notice the differences between people and how they are able to lead in their own way. The diversity of the quality of leadership is what is able to drive great outcomes and change. It is wonderful to be able to appreciate and understand those around you that will contribute to building valuable relationships and collective partnerships/teamwork.
The beginning of the year was full of inspiration, new goals and motivation, which fitted in perfectly with the timing of the conference.
For me personally, I felt that those qualities were in abundance kind of like being at the peak of a roller coaster ride, and then suddenly the ride plunges over the edge and ends.
The overarching take away lesson is that we do not only need to engage those around us, but engaging with ourselves is equally important.
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