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Five Easy New Year’s Resolutions for Administrators

Five Easy New Year’s Resolutions for Administrators

It’s hard to resist the urge to set new goals for ourselves at the beginning of a new year, yet time and time again, many of us have set resolutions for the new year only for them to become lost to the regular shuffle of life, forgotten, or ignored until the start of another year. So, this trip around the sun we thought it might be a good idea to think a little smaller when it comes to making resolutions.

Here are a few simple (and actually achievable) resolutions for school administrators:

1. Try not to eat at your desk

We all do it; it’s not a crime, but it is a tough habit to break. It may not seem like a big deal to eat lunch at your desk so that you can send out a few extra emails during the day, but it’s important to remember that taking a break and stepping away from work for a few minutes during the day is good for mental health, and it can even help increase productivity in the long run. If you find that when lunch rolls around, you simply have nowhere else to eat but at your desk, at least try to enjoy your meal mindfully, allowing yourself a few minutes during the day to step away from your email and focus on the present.  

2. Greet people by name

As Dale Carnegie said, “A person's name is to that person, the sweetest, most important sound in any language.” This year, try to make it your mission to greet everyone you see around school by name. It’s a simple gesture but a powerful one. Not only it is a polite way to say hello, but it also demonstrates how much you care about creating a welcoming and positive environment around school, and it helps the people around you feel seen and appreciated.

3. Walk around the building once a day

Taking a stroll is a great way to fit in a little movement into your day and also an effective method to practice those greeting skills, take a look around to make sure that everything is shipshape, and even clear your head if you need another break from your desk. Try to see if you can build a quick 10- to 15-minute jaunt into your routine.

4. Clean out your desk

Yes, you read that right. Set aside a day, sooner rather than later, and just clean out your desk. Or clean out that old filing cabinet in the corner of the office that no one has touched since 2011. Set a kitchen timer, go through everything, throw away the junk, file away the important stuff, wipe down everything, give it all a good dusting, and then leave it alone until next year.

Many of us have a habit of letting papers pile up over time, but no one is expecting your desk to look Instagram-worthy every day of the year. After all, you are working at your desk; it’s OK if it gets a little messy. So just make sure that you are giving it a good go-through at least once this year. Then, you don’t need to worry about it again for a while.

5. Show your staff that you are grateful

No need to wait for teacher appreciation week to roll around to let the educators around you know how much they matter to you. From remembering birthdays and celebrating work anniversaries to making sure that classrooms are well-supplied and school staff are feeling supported, to actively preventing burnout—showing your staff members that you see their hard work and value them as people will not only help you build better relationships, but it will also help you build a stronger school community.

You can still set resolutions to accomplish great things this year, like running a marathon or climbing a mountain, but don’t forget that the little things matter too. If you’re looking for more ideas on how you can show your staff some love this year, be sure to check out our blog post, Creative Ways to Celebrate Your Staff!

If setting up a strong virtual or hybrid learning program is also on your to-do list this year, or you're looking for best practices to improve your current program, be sure to check out Edmentum's free Hybrid & Virtual Learning Toolkit.