It has been too long since my last blog post. It has been a busy few months for my family and I since we got back from Disney World in September. Meghan started her full-time job as a Paramedic for East Baton Rouge EMS in October. I completed a 5K in December and then we were all over the place for the holidays.
The most exciting new development was the Marriage Boot Camp that Meghan and I just attended this past week. It was an intense four-day experience in Dallas. We met some great people there and had a wonderful time. It was hard work, but we learned so much. They advertise it as equivalent to two years of counseling. We were taught communication skills and conflict resolution skills. It was not a make it or break it kind of thing for Meghan and I. We just wanted to get closer and work on our communication and how to meet each other’s needs. We spent years just being parents and started to get away from being intentional with things like date nights. We started being more like roommates instead of friends like when we started.
The boot camp was so much more than we could have imagined. We learned so much about our love languages and how dedicated we really were to each other. There is a Life Enrichment Boot Camp bundled in, so we got to learn a lot about ourselves and how to deal with has happened to us throughout our life. Are you angry at someone? Are you unable to forgive someone? What about yourself? Then one of these boot camps may be for you too! I saw some lives changed in powerful ways. There was a lot of crying, but it was a good thing. I saw people finally have a weight lifted off them from decades ago. I just cannot say enough good things about this Boot Camp. The craziest thing is the Boot Camp is staffed by super dedicated volunteers! If you want to learn more about the Boot Camps, go to http://www.marriagebootcamp.com or http://www.lifeenrichmentbootcamp.com.
We just got back from a week long trip to Disney World! It was wonderful! The kids had a great time. Meghan and I had been planning the trip for almost a year and waited till we got almost to the airport to surprise the kids. We flew there because that car ride would have too much with the kids at this age (8, 6, 4 and 2). We went with Meghan’s parents and her grandparents. There were many days that we could barely walk anymore by the end of the day. But we were there for the kids so we fought through it. The kids got to meet many of the Disney characters and princesses multiple times. We spent two days in Magic Kingdom then one day in Epcot, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios and Typhoon Lagoon. We had the most fun in Typhoon Lagoon because the lines were so short! Hollywood Studios and Epcot were a close second for all of us.
Here is a link to all of our pictures from the trip: Disney World Vacation Photo Link
I have been wanting to right another blog post for a couple months, but I just couldn’t think of how to start it. Finally I saw a quote on LinkedIn that gave me the kick start I needed…
“Managers light a fire under people. Leaders light a fire in people.”
I have seen variations of this quote a few times and every time I see it, I get excited! I love this attitude! I have worked for seven different businesses and many superiors up to this point in my life. There are not too many that have this mentality with their employees. I know it can be difficult to always be a leader when the “going gets tough” some days. There are some times when you are in crisis mode and all you can do is light “fires” under people.
Communication and planning play a big role. Checking in with your employees on the completion of a task should not be the only time you communicate with them. The jobs where I have been happiest have been where I have been in sync with my supervisor the most and been a part of their planning process. There are some jobs where you dread your boss wanting to talk with you because communication is so rare or it is basically just about your job performance . I have found when your supervisor has a long term plan for your department and when you get to have a part in it, you can really feel like you are a part of the team. The long term plan always puts you in proactive mode instead of reactive mode which is much less stressful, at least in the IT field!
Managing and Leading other people is not something I have an abundance of experience with, so these are just my observations plus a little Business Degree. My Bachelor Degree is in Management but book knowledge is nothing compared to real world experience in dealing with other people. What I can say is that I had the wonderful experience of leading an intern about two years ago at my previous job. He went on to become a great employee at that company and I truly value that time. I can’t wait to be able to mentor and lead another person again.
You don’t even have to be a manager or a boss to be a leader. You can be a leader with your coworkers by shining a bright light on their bleak day. I have had a few teachers that had great leadership qualities and pushed me out of my comfort zone. You can be the one positive voice in an array of negativity!