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From the Base — Strength

From the Director of Wellbeing, Matt Shroff

I hope you all are well and the summer provided opportunities for rest, family and enjoyment.

I made a presentation to staff during INSET (In Service Training) on mental health in schools, with quite a lot of emphasis on stress and coping strategies. There was a time for reflection, for everyone to consider the most stressful parts of their lives. As I considered mine, the usual and obvious ones came to mind: money, deadlines and the worry I carry about things I cannot yet change or affect.

A few days later, with those thoughts still in my mind, I came across a little saying:

Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles. It empties today of its strength.

In the two days since, I have found this helpful. But, I want to dig in a little deeper. I understand that I should not put my energy into the vagueness of tomorrow, but focus it on the here and now. I understand that I undermine my today by letting my strength be eaten away. But thinking further, I feel it means something else, too. That worry is destructive, that it is a ‘black hole’, that I risk my potential on needless thoughts. To be master of tomorrow I should affect those things that I can — what’s in front of me. After all, by being the best/most productive/successful today will probably put me in the best place for the worries of tomorrow.

Maybe it could read:

The strength of today can dispel the worry of tomorrow.

This week the Headmaster spoke to the boys of what lies ahead and encouraged them to take the opportunities provided to be curious and interested. I see the parallel. You can’t get to a destination without expending the energy to take those first steps.

Have a good week.

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