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An Annus Horribilis Meets Gratitude

In this blog post I share a bit of a reflection on hard times, my current state and gratitude. 

As the week of Thanksgiving approaches and the Holiday season is in full swing a clear and traditional path to gratitude and reflection is upon me. If you’ve been following my journey over the last few years there have been many ups and downs personally and professionally. I’ve ended and begun many chapters and dabbled in others. If you’ve followed my journey over the last few years you’d also know I have a bit of a fascination with the Royal Family and with the release of the two part season 6 of The Crown last week and in the coming weeks, with anticipation of that I have been rewatching seasons 1-5 of the series.

As I write this piece at the start of the week of Thanksgiving I just finished rewatching the episode “Annus Horribilis” where Queen Elizabeth II shares her renowned speech admitting to falling short of duty and owned up to shortcomings, emphasizing that though a leader she is still human, and emphasizing the important of being REAL despite her position as Sovereign. (Though the show and reality are not in complete sync) I made many connections as I watched the episode and as I am reflecting and in this season of gratitude. 

Leadership is something that we are all called to on some level. For myself, I believe in and make my best efforts to be a steward of servant leadership. As an educational leader, I have dedicated a good chunk of my life to serving students and educators. In recent years of my leadership I have faced hard times. At one point, having my very own “Annus Horribilis”. Some of my greatest lessons in leadership through these types of moments though have come from being real and letting that vulnerability show a bit. Great leaders, after all, do not hold all of the answers or know all things. But instead, we make well intentioned decisions and act in the way we see best fit to serve those we have been entrusted to lead. We ask the right questions as we coach and attempt to impact. And we reflect in order to pivot when needed or to guide us in the future. 

As I reflect on my leadership, leadership in general, and my life and its many blessings as I enter into this season of thanksgiving, I write and share today in hopes that my message of “real” continues to shine forth and might impact even just one person. I want to express my gratitude that you are taking the time to read this and allow me to share my thoughts and for being connected with one another. That this week, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, that you take some time to slow down, reflect, express gratitude to others and the things in your life, but that you also take some time for you and express gratitude for yourself - truly giving yourself some grace and love for just being you and living and leading in all the ways that you do. 

I am so thankful for the #RealConnections in my life and that includes with you reading this today. 

In Thanks And Blessings,


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