Kelly Counselor's Conversations

A discussion about life and how school counseling fits into it all

Spring “Break” Reading

Last week, I was thrilled to take my first Spring Break vacation in years to Fort Myers Beach, FL.  As my husband and I chose (as gluttons for punishment) to drive the 18 hours from Northern Indiana down there, I had time to read two books that for once, had no relation to school counseling.  Yet, I still found parallels.  Of course.

(Disclaimer:  I am not paid to endorse these books in any way, and all opinions are solely my own).

Hard Choices- Hillary Clinton
A fascinating look at international diplomacy and how painstaking it is to form, repair, and solidify relationships with world leaders in order to not only help the world, but preserve the United States’ interests as well.  Clinton speaks often about how “smart power” and strategies were necessary to repair broken systems from the Bush Administration and take diplomacy into a new era of compromise and foresight to increase global democracy.

I love how Clinton emphasizes how the power of planning, focus, and relationships can really result (albeit sometimes slowly) in drastic positive change.  As school counselors, while intentional in our work, we also rely on an element of faith that if we steer the course and put “first things first”, that broad powerful systemic change can and will happen.  Plus, I love Clinton’s stories of going into cities on her travels to personally meet with students, children, and citizens.  Moral of those stories- don’t stay in your office.  Or plane.  Or luxurious hotel room.  Whatever, just get out there.


Tribes- Seth Godin

I actually listened to this as an audiobook- great for the long, boring night drives.  As a side note, audiobooks along with podcasts are great ways to learn, decompress, and use driving time to and from work wisely.

Many of you reading this are probably at least a little familiar with Seth Godin.  If not, you should be.  He is so inspirational and I always feel like he can help us all make the world a better place.  Godin explains how in today’s global and technological society, rounding up a group of like-minded people into a “tribe” is easier than ever. Leaders are more critical than ever in this endeavor- and not just leading, but that connecting passionate “tribesmen” with one another is critical as well.  While I can’t quote this verbatim (it was an audiobook a week ago, after all), Godin’s remark that while leading too soon can be uncomfortable, leading too late can be disastrous for your cause.  Also, letting others take the lead at times can the wisest decision.  As counselors, we are often “yes men” (and women).  Learning to say, even just internally, that “no, I can’t lead this- I don’t have the (insert knowledge, energy, passion, etc.) to see it through” is one of the best things we can do for our other big causes, and for self-care.

What books have you read lately that bring connections in other areas of your life?

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