The Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton School District staff has worked with world-renowned motivational speaker and author Willow Sweeney on mindset since the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year. Willow has co-authored highly successful books, such as, “Top 20 Teens: Discovering the Best-kept Thinking, Learning and Communicating Secrets of Successful Teenagers” and “Top 20 Teachers: The Revolution in American Education.”

The JWP staff has virtually met with Willow twice this school year and has plans for two more sessions. During these uncertain times, thinking about our thinking and understanding our mindset has major impacts on our current reality. We don’t have to pretend the current situation and these uncertain times are ideal, but we can acknowledge the struggle and examine our mindset in order to thrive. The three concepts below are messages from Willow’s sessions with JWP staff.

Stay Connected: During these times of social distancing, restrictions, quarantine, and Distance Learning, staying connected is more important to the health and well-being of our community.

Call for Action: Make a plan for all household family members to connect with one person outside the household every night or week just to check-in. The more we stay connected during these challenging times, the stronger our community will become.

Stay Curious: It is easy to judge and jump to conclusions when we are not operating in the desired mindset. During these sometimes stressful and uncertain times, assuming intent and having a lack of understanding can lead to difficult situations that are avoidable.

Call for Action: Lead with genuine care and curiosity during challenging situations. The more we care and stay curious, the better situations are handled.

Stay in the Moment: Stress can often be the result of what we think might happen in the future and the stories we tell ourselves, sometimes without all the information.

Call for Action: During these uncertain times, stay present and focus on “doing the next best thing” as Willow Sweeney told our staff.

The holiday season typically brings about added stress, so in the middle of this pandemic, thinking about our mindset can help us thrive. If we can remember to say connected, curious and in the moment, our community will become stronger. Please take care.

Kurt Stumpf is superintendent of Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton Public Schools

Load comments