I enjoy Facebook, period. I enjoy seeing pictures of friends, stupid cat videos, the educational stuff that’s out there, and the positive energy I can find from people with whom I wouldn’t expect to come.

I logged on a little while ago, and caught the tail end of a video from Lindsey Nichols, who is the founder of  “Positive Performance Training“, a company that works with the mental training of businesses,  coaches, athletes, and teams of all kinds. She was talking about her blog, and an activity she does with teams. She has them first look for all those items with red in them, then go back and look for the blue items and how it’s easy NOT to see the blue things when all you are looking for is red. It’s about seeing the opportunities that may be right there, but we are so busy we look right past them. It’s training your mind to see the blue. She goes on to talk about her own “seeing the blue” moment, then leaves us with some questions to ask ourselves at the bottom of the page. All in all, 15 minutes of my time that were well worth the investment!



So, I got to thinking, how does this apply to me and what I’m doing? I’ve got one daughter in college and a high school senior. Next summer, we’ll be getting her ready for where ever she’ll be going (Iowa or Iowa State), and after that, my summers will be mine. What opportunities are out there that I’m not seeing OR what am I willing change in order to make things happen?

Some things that pop into my head:

  1. Farmer’s markets: We’ve been blessed with an acreage that we can afford without breaking the bank. I’ve always been overly ambitious with the garden, planting more than we ever need, so what if we could sell some of that? We’ve talked about it before, but with schedules the way they are, never really did much with it. Could this be an opportunity? I don’t know, but it’s something that’s very plausible.
  2. Radio broadcasting: I’ve got a face for radio and a voice for it too. I entertained for a brief time getting some kind of communication major in college, but went the teaching route. What if I got a part time gig at the local radio station? Could this work out?
  3. Technology: I love technology, and am curious where that could take me. I’ve thought about taking classes to get a certification of some sort or diving into the ed-tech realm even further, using Minecraft, Raspberry Pi, or some other ed-techie fun to continue my teaching career and make  some more money too.
  4. Coaching: I’ve talked before about how I love coaching and how it’s a classroom on the floor. Could this be an opportunity that’s in front of me that I’m just not grabbing on to? Does coaching have to be in sports? Could it be mental training? Could it be coaching technology like an after school club with students?

Now, as I think about my classroom, I love how our #patiopdIA has got me thinking about things. I have to use Write Traits, but what can I bring in to continue to push both creative writing and more technical writing? We’ll have a bit longer classes, but no “free reading time” outside of the classroom: how do help my students to read more without them seeing it as an assignment? How do I assess 17 different standards without losing myself in the school work?  I still need a life outside of school or I will go crazy. How do I get Minecraft in my literacy class? All great questions that I have to say have me thinking about my own teaching and I can create a better classroom and better me.

The whole idea of the exercise is to get the creative juices going and work from there. Well, it was a success, the juices are flowing! 🙂

So, if you’ve got the time, I encourage you to think outside the box a little bit, think about the opportunities, the “blue”, that are in your life.  How do you make things better if you couldn’t fail? What would it look like?