Doing Work You Love
(or How Teaching Led Me to Traveling)
This month I celebrate my three year work anniversary with the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA). As I reflect on the work, is fitting to share how teaching led me to traveling.
When was the last time you were in a job that you truly enjoyed? You probably enjoyed the job because you were in a role that you intentionally sought, the job allowed you to utilize your strengths and talents, or the position overlapped with some of your personal pleasures. I'm fortunate to have had a career where I've truly enjoyed every role.
My career began as a 7th and 8th grade math teacher within the Chicago Public School (CPS) system. After teaching for a few years I began working as a math specialist, and later instructional coach and consultant. Each of those positions allowed me to expand the four walls of my classroom to reach hundreds of educators, which in turn impacted thousands of students. My motto and email tag line while working with CPS was "Servicing students by supporting teachers".
"Servicing students by supporting teachers"I wanted to continue my work by supporting even more teachers, with larger audiences. The desire for greater impact was very strong, and I asked life to show me how that it could be done. Quite naturally, I began to align with the possibilities through the people I met and situations I encountered.
Visioning the Work
During the several months leading up to a personal vacation in Costa Rica, I decided to create a new job for myself by mapping it out on paper. My vision included what my days would consist of, who I'd work with, what types of audiences I'd impact, and more. Within a few weeks I happened across a great company called NWEA in 2012 and the opportunity to travel and teach presented itself!
Now as I celebrate my three year anniversary with NWEA and reflect on my work, roles and responsibilities, it's clear to see how the role of Professional Development (PD) Consultant has been everything I asked for in my work! Not only have I logged over 100,000 miles of travel, but I've worked with thousands of educators nationwide, which has impacted thousands upon thousands of students.
Creating the Work
As a PD Consultant with NWEA I often I get comments on how passionate I am about my work, followed by questions about how to have a similar experience. The advice I share is "...get clear on what you want to experience — what you will be doing, what it will feel like — and think about it a lot. Think about it so much that it starts to feel real. Make it feel so real to you that you begin to expect it to happen." (Hubbard, 2015. Interview with Lillie at TeachingTraveling.com)
"...get clear on what you want to experience — what you will be doing, what it will feel like — and think about it a lot. Think about it so much that it starts to feel real. Make it feel so real to you that you begin to expect it to happen."
I have created a career that I love because I believe that investing one's time, talents and strengths in work should yield a ROI that equates to pure joy. Part of the joy is a result of having opportunities that meet your professional growth needs and desires.
What career satisfaction have you created for yourself?
Learn more about teaching and traveling by checking out my latest interview with Lillie at TeachingTraveling.com.
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Blogs by Fenesha
Fenesha is a personal growth and professional development specialist who helps people navigate difficult topics with ease.