- Set goals.
- Track progress.
Crossing the finish line of my first marathon and stepping in front of a classroom for the first time were two incredibly important moments of my life. Neither could have happened without setting and monitoring my progress towards goals.
Whether it’s succeeding in academics or competing in athletics, setting goals and tracking progress are crucial. Having taught for 4 years in Washington, D.C. I saw firsthand the importance of positive goal-setting in my students’ academic, emotional, and physical lives. Although my primary role was a literacy teacher, I always worked to create a positive culture that celebrated purposeful progress, sharing my own experiences as a way to motivate ALL students to set and work towards ambitious goals.
I have also seen the importance of goal-setting in my personal life. Early on in college, I knew that I wanted to become an educator through Teach for America. Having that goal in mind, I worked hard to prepare myself emotionally and academically for the challenges that would inevitably surface. Additionally, I have seen the power of goal-setting in my fitness pursuits. In fact, before I begin training for any race, I always set a stretch (almost impossible to reach) goal time among other smaller goals, tracking my progress along the way. Although I do not always reach my stretch time, it motivates me throughout the long workouts and the race itself. If I don’t have the goal in mind as I work, I will inevitably fall short.
On Saturday I will be in Seattle putting myself through a fitness challenge as I run my fifth marathon. A hilly course, I know that I have to overcome mental and physical obstacles as I hope for my stretch goal. I may reach it; I may not. Either way, I am confident that my goal will motivate throughout the race and afterwards, I will celebrate.