Being Identity-Oriented

In our Senior Seminar class, we've been learning basic budget and banking skills (i.e., check writing, balancing a checkbook register, reconciling a monthly bank statement, etc.). To help us get the basics, we’re using a fictitious character who is destitute, disheveled, and disorganized and doomed for financial destruction unless we help. After reconciling his checkbook, we then set out as a class to create a budget for him— and we ran into problems.

What we found out is that personal finance is, as Dave Ramsey says, “80% behavior and 20% head knowledge." That proved true when our class started arguing about how much money should be budgeted for clothes (some said $0, others said $75) and entertainment (some said $0; others said $100). Our class couldn’t agree on the “right" amount because there’s no such thing. The amount a person budgets for anything is an identity issue— a heart issue (Matthew 6:21)— and we all prioritize some things over others.

Writer and speaker Jason Johnson writes about identity issues in his short (free!) eBook What’s Your Why?:

Generally speaking, people make decisions through two primary lenses: Outcomes and Identity. The outcome-oriented lens filters decision making through an assessment of costs and benefits. The identity-oriented lens filters decision-making through a lens that is more intrinsically motivated by something deep within.

Johnson later writes, “A person who is outcome-orientated asks questions like
  • What will it require of me?
  • How will it make me feel?
  • What are the long-term effects?

But a person who is identity-oriented will ask questions like 'In light of the costs…'
  • Who am I?
  • What kind of situation is this?
  • What does someone like me do?"

It’s when we begin asking the second set of questions that we find our why— the compelling reason we act the way we do, and just like with personal finance, our decisions are about identity and heart.

"What’s being a teacher at CAC going to cost me?"
-More than you think.
“How’s it going to make me feel?"
- Worn out, excited, uncomfortable, connected, or uncertain— it just depends on the moment.
“What are the long-term effects?"
-There is no way to know.
“Who am I?"
-I am a child of God who can do all things through Him who gives me strength.
“What kind of situation is this?"
-An unpredictable environment where students bring their needs, hurts, and questions with them and occasionally allow us to step into their lives to help.
“What does someone like me do in a situation like this?"
-I step towards it and accept the costs as worth it.
*adapted from Jason Johnson’s What’s Your Why?
I’m so thankful to be surrounded by Christian mentors who have chosen to be part of our mission and model Christ-like behavior every day. When we understand our why, good things happen.

(And in case you’re wondering, my students were eventually able to help our disorganized friend with his budget [head knowledge]— but now it’s up to him to follow the plan [behavior].)

Positive Parent Contact Challenge

  • We are killing this month's Positive Parent Contact Challenge! Thank you so much for participating and encouraging our students and their parents. With only one more week to go, here’s where we stand:
    • 122 total contacts documented (110 different students)
    • 24 (out of 35) teachers have documented at least one positive contact (current leader with 13)
    • 8th Grade in the lead with 27 positive contacts
  • Danny Sullivan has done an amazing job leading our first Mustang Missions project of the year. It’s so great seeing our students rally together for a cause bigger than ourselves. #forthefather
  • This year’s Talent Show was epic! A huge shout-out goes to Jenna Thomas for producing such a fantastic event for our students. I love having students share their God-given talents, but I’m also always encouraged by the audience support. It’s such a community-building night, and I hope that positive momentum carries throughout the year among our student body.
  • Our first Family Chapel day is in the books. Yesterday went very smoothly and the feedback I heard from students has all been positive. Thank you for making Family Chapel a special time for our students. When their only complaint is that we don’t do it often enough, I think we’re on the right track.
  • Last Saturday, James Wilhite and Daniel Tate took our band students to Harding University for a day of playing, marching, tailgating, and watching football. Our students had a great time, and I’m thankful James and Daniel were willing to invest their time on Saturday to build relationships with our students and offer them the opportunity.
  • Congrats to Coach Q and the golf team for qualifying for State next week. Coach Q spent Monday and Tuesday in Fairfield Bay, and on the way home, he and three golfers spent some extra time in Greenbriar after experiencing some bus issues. A special thanks goes to Kevin Lloyd for saving the day and helping the golf team and Coach Q make it back to Mustang Mountain at a reasonable time that evening.

Upcoming Events
  • Today— Lights Up field trip (all day)
  • Tuesday, September 26— State Golf Tournament
  • Wednesday, September 27
    • Spanish III Field Trip (8:45-2:30)
    • 8th Grade Field Trip to Ron Coleman Crystal Mines (all day)
  • Thursday, September 28
    • Emergency Drill— 2nd Period (end of period)
    • Intercom chapel Meetings
      • Junior Class w/ Jostens (auditorium) *Will be rescheduled
      • History Club Meeting (auditorium)
  • Wednesday, October 4— Monthly Faculty Meeting (7:30 AM; library)
  • Saturday, October 7— Ignite Youth Rally (auditorium)
  • Monday, October 9— Homecoming Week Begins
  • Wednesday, October 11
    • End of Grading Period (2:00 dismissal)
    • PSAT Testing (AM)
  • Thursday, October 12— The Math Show (adjusted schedule)
    • 8:00-8:35 1st Period (35 min.)
    • 8:40-9:15 2nd Period (35 min.) *MS Bell at 8:58
    • 9:20-9:55 3rd Period (40 min.) *MS Bell at 9:27
    • 10:00-10:40 4th Period (40 min.)
    • 10:45-11:45 Chapel & The Math Show (60 min.)
    • Regular bell schedule remainder of the day
  • Friday, October 13— Homecoming Friday (adjusted schedule)
  • Saturday, October 14— CAC Golf Tournament

Responsibilities for Next Week
Week B
  • Cafeteria AM— K. Allison
  • Cafeteria PM— B. Arnold
  • Parking Lot AM— D. Sullivan
  • Parking Lot PM— C. Baber
  • HS Lunch— C. Morse, B. Spencer, & J. Gates
  • MS Lunch— T. Kaye & J. Wilhite
  • Chapel— A. Jamison
  • Detention— Open (any volunteers?)
Remember, it is your responsibility to find a replacement if you are unable to cover your assigned duty. Click here for duty schedule.

Upcoming Meetings
  • PLCs this week
  • Wednesday, October 4— Monthly Faculty Meeting (7:30 AM, library)

4 Values (in rank order)
  1. Model Christ
  2. Safety & Security
  3. School First
  4. Quality Instruction

Important School Documents Quick Reference

Resources Worth Checking Out For Personal and Professional Growth
This is one of my favorite email productivity tools— check it out! To start using Boomerang right away, click here to download.

Book Recommendation

About the Book (from Amazon)
Do you think it's possible to truly enjoy your job? No matter what it is or where you are? Timothy Gallwey does, and in this groundbreaking book he tells you how to overcome the inner obstacles that sabotage your efforts to be your best on the job.

Timothy Gallwey burst upon the scene twenty years ago with his revolutionary approach to excellence in sports. His bestselling books The Inner Game of Tennis and The Inner Game of Golf, with over one million copies in print, changed the way we think about learning and coaching. But the Inner Game that Gallwey discovered on the tennis court is about more than learning a better backhand; it is about learning how to learn, a critical skill that, in this case, separates the productive, satisfied employee from the rest of the pack. For the past twenty years Gallwey has taken his Inner Game expertise to many of America's top companies, including AT&T, Coca-Cola, Apple, and IBM, to teach their managers and employees how to gain better access to their own internal resources.

What inner obstacles is Gallwey talking about? Fear of failure, resistance to change, procrastination, stagnation, doubt, and boredom, to name a few. Gallwey shows you how to tap into your natural potential for learning, performance, and enjoyment so that any job, no matter how long you've been doing it or how little you think there is to learn about it, can become an opportunity to sharpen skills, increase pleasure, and heighten awareness. And if your work environment has been turned on its ear by Internet technology, reorganization, and rapidly accelerating change, this book offers a way to steer a confident course while navigating your way toward personal and professional goals.

The Inner Game of Work teaches you the difference between a rote performance and a rewarding one. It teaches you how to stop working in the conformity mode and start working in the mobility mode. It shows how having a great coach can make as much difference in the boardroom as on the basketball court-- and Gallwey teaches you how to find that coach and, equally important, how to become one. The Inner Game of Work challenges you to reexamine your fundamental motivations for going to work in the morning and your definitions of work once you're there. It will ask you to reassess the way you make changes and teach you to look at work in a radically new way.

"Ever since The Inner Game of Tennis, I've been fascinated and have personally benefitted by the incredibly empowering insights flowing out of Gallwey's self-one/self-two analysis. This latest book applies this liberating analogy to work inspiring all of us to relax and trust our true self."
--Stephen R. Covey, author of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

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