…and that is why most people cannot handle it. The funny thing about leadership, however, is that it requires that a certain amount of unadulterated truth be spoken. There is really no other way to affect change if you cannot admit, see, or speak the truth. In my admittedly short time in this new role, I have tried to walk the fine line between speaking truth and balancing the politics of leadership…which is another ugly truth that no one likes to talk about.
I wish I could tell you that this post will walk you down the road of successfully navigating this unspoken part of education, but unfortunately it will not. I don’t have any of the answers that will get you to the other side. I’m still learning myself. And the justice-seeking, advocate for the little people, who is perpetually standing on her soapbox that lives on the inside of me is becoming more and more impatient with the career-driven, office-politic-balancing professional that lives on the outside.
In moments like these I want to scream. I want to rail against the powers that be…the “THEY” that is so often referred to but never identified. But I don’t. Because I have 4 children to feed and a mortgage to pay. And that makes me sad. Because I vowed to myself that I would not conform…that I would not lose myself in the process of becoming a leader.
So tonight I will take a step back. I am choosing self-care. Because protecting the core of who I am is more important to me than fitting in the box and being the person I am expected to be. Because Soapbox Ashley needs to know that she has value and is appreciated. Because Career Driven Ashley is going to burn out if she doesn’t slow down. Because Mom/Wife/Friend Ashley needs a moment to relax and de-stress so that work doesn’t bleed over into home. I encourage you all to do the same.