Side Tracked, Tiny Buddha & Font Tricks

in , by Stephanie, October 22, 2020

It’s Friday! 

How was your literate life this week? As always, I’m here in your Inbox to celebrate our literate lives with a sneak peek into my own. Here’s what I’ve been reading, writing, learning and exploring this week:

What I’m Reading:

If I am completely honest, the tremendous shifts that we’ve all been facing have been causing just a teensy-bit of anxiety. =) I see it in myself, in my children and in the teachers and students that I work with. And when I have a challenge, I turn to books. I’ve been gathering books to support teachers and students with feelings of anxiety and read Sidetracked by Diana Harmon Asher this week. And just as I hoped, the main character, Joseph Friedman, taught me a thing or two about how to navigate an overactive mind, multiple phobias and day to day anxieties. Beautifully told from the point of view of a middle school boy, Asher reminds us what it is like to feel uncomfortable in our own skin….and what it’s like to push through hard things again and again until one day something unexpected might remind you that you’re exactly who you're meant to be.

What I’m Writing:

This week, my writing life paralleled my reading life and I’ve been journaling to calm anxious thoughts and explore how I might help my children, my students and the teachers I work with do the same. I found a set of powerful questions from Tiny Buddha that have filled the pages of my notebook:

  • Today, I choose to let go of the things I can’t control, including…

  • I recognize that I don’t need to have all the answers right now. Today, I give myself permission not to know…

  • Dear inner critic: You always focus on everything I’m doing wrong, but I know I’m doing a lot right, including…

  • I know I’m strong enough to handle whatever comes at me, because I’ve survived a lot, including…

  • Instead of worrying about making the “wrong” choices, I trust that no matter what I choose…

Powerful, right? Open up a fresh page and see where a bit of reflection takes you. 

What I’m Learning:

My son let me in on a special little writing hack this week. When he is tasked to write a first draft of a writing piece, he usually gets sidetracked by the length of his piece or the need for revision. So, to avoid getting stuck in the trap of focusing on length, he changes the font color to white and just starts typing. Later, he’ll change the font back to black to see how much he has written and then will revise as needed. I LOVE his trick to keep writing momentum high and think it has potential for all aspects of our lives. While we cannot change certain aspects of our busy lives, we CAN silence notifications, close open tabs and remove outside distractions when working on something reading, writing or self-care. =)

What I’m Exploring:

Ralph Fletcher posted on his Facebook page recently, inviting our favorite Fall images. So, I’ve been trying to explore my neighborhood and home town with new eyes, really taking in the beautiful changing foliage in upstate New York. But admittedly, I’m still addicted to exploring OTHER people’s outdoor views on the amazing View From My Window Facebook group!

There you have it! I hope this inspires you to make space for more reading and writing in your own life. What are the highlights from your literate life this week? 

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