What?!
I want you to think about the school year during summer?
Yes I do.  Just hear me out for a minute. Don’t worry, I still want you to enjoy your summer.
Summer is a time I always look forward to.  Two months off to relax, regroup, travel and even do a little planning. Did June fly by for you too?
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However,  just taking a little time now to reflect on what worked for you last year will help you continue that trend. Did some new therapy materials get amazing results? Or did you find a new organization tool? You want to keep that good stuff going.
Take a moment right now. Close your eyes and think about going back to work. What’s the first thing you think of that fills you with dread? Or that gives you that “oh yuck” feeling? You know, that activity that you wish you could pay someone to do for you?
Really, I’m not trying to bring you down. I’m suggesting you take a look at what you can do to make it better.
I’ve been chatting with a lot of other SLPs this summer.  Here’s a sampling of what some of you said when asked about professional roadblocks:
“It can get  bit crazy with the testing and paperwork that is required.  You feel like time is being taken away from your students.”
 
I hard time finding the balance between paperwork and making sure my kiddos get the attention they need.”
 
“…lack of time.”
 
Hands down lack of time and too much paperwork were the biggest obstacles.
I know it can be overwhelming at times.  So what I’m suggesting is that you take a little bit of your down time, even if you’re just making some mental notes from your beach blanket, to put some systems into place that will make the coming school year run more smoothly.
During the next few weeks, we will explore some systems and thought processes that will help you free up your time. So you can get your school year running smoothly and spend more time doing what is really important to you…spending time with your students and making a difference in their lives.
We’ll explore it all from IEP’s to scheduing to progress reports to billing.
But for now, let’s start off nice and easy with a thought provoking question…
What is your why?
Think back to why you chose to be an SLP.  Specifically a school based SLP.  What are your top three reasons?  Really think about it and dig deep. Don’t let yourself off the hook with “I don’t know”,  this is important. Are the reasons still the same?  What results do you want? You can do this, it doesn’t need to be perfect; you just need to be clear.
Here’s my example just to get you started. My top three “why’s” are:
  1. Connectedness.  Making the world a little better place than when I got here (lofty, I know)
  2.  Independence. (I like having a lot of autonomy to make my own decisions)
  3.  Diversity. I love how diverse the profession is, with the continuous learning curve.
  4.  Honestly, salary and vacation time does have something to do with it; I’m pretty happy with mine, considering the amount of time I have off.
  5.  Creativity/Play. Helping my students learn through play and creativity is another aspect of the job that I really love.
(I know that’s more than three, I’m having a tough time narrowing it down.)
So here’s your “homework”… figure out your top three reasons for being an SLP. I’ve created a few fun worksheets for you to help get you started, just click on the image below.
 WhyIChoose2BSLP
Stay tuned for next week, when you’ll figure out how to get more of what you want (from your 3 things list) and remove some of the obstacles.
SLP Like a Boss,
 School SLP

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