Teacher gossip and judgement are rampant in some schools. I know because as I coach teachers from across the country, I hear these statements over and over :
- People will judge me for (fill in the blank) – leaving early, setting boundaries…
- I don’t want people to think I’m a (fill in the blank) – slacker, suck-up, pushover…
- I want people to see me as (fill in the blank) – an asset, superwoman or superman…
- I want people to like me
- I hate upsetting people
- I don’t want to make waves or cause a fuss
- I hate letting people down
What do these all have in common? They are other-oriented – focused on how others view you or what others think about you.
Other-orientation (focusing on others’ thoughts and feelings) makes you compassionate, empathetic, and caring. However, other-orientation can also be toxic. When these are the types of thoughts that control the decisions you make about your time, activities, priorities or attitudes, then who is in control of your life? That’s right…others. Ouch.