I received a beautiful stone as one of my gifts from my best friend for my birthday. I then received a kit to create a stepping stone for my landscaping from my sister-in-law and brother-in-law as one of my gifts. It seemed to be a theme! It made me think about stones!
During an interview to move to another district, the Superintendent asked me, “Will you be using this position as a stepping stone to move on to another position in a different district?”
No, I would not think of using this position as a stepping stone. As you can see, I have stayed at my hometown school district my entire career until I could not move up any further. A principal position would not be available for many years, and I am ready to serve in this capacity. I plan to make this the place I retire.
Stumbling blocks can become stepping stones if you look at the situation through a solution-focused lens. An accident happened in my life, which was very traumatic. Most did not think I survived the accident, and many did not believe I would recover. Through the grace of God and the purpose of my life, I could stand in front of the children I served for a bit longer.
I was welcomed back with a great deal of support from many people to help me during my years of healing. I had severe injuries to the brain and more. It soon became clearer to me, the strain of the day was too much for me. I needed something where I did not need to make quick decisions and have all the pressures a middle school principal has each day.
My stumbling block had provided a stepping stone to be at the central office. I would not be with children, families, and staff but would be working to help build foundations with the funding and influences I had.
We experience slip-ups from time to time. We are all human, and mistakes happen to the best of us. Sometimes slip-ups can impact lives more than we think. If you forget to put a box of rice in the bag at the grocery store, it is a slip-up that will not be a huge impact on someone’s life. If you are a doctor and slip up by taking out the right kidney, it should have been the left one—a huge slip-up! When you go in for any surgery, you will go through many safety checks to make sure they are doing exactly what they are supposed to do before they put you under. Thankful for the safety protocols.
I have thought about when a slip-up has worked out to be positive, like the stumbling block to a stepping stone. I thought about it after writing, deleting, and writing again. Slip-ups can lead you to negative thoughts. You can begin to play the blame game, feel sorry for yourself or remain in a cycle of trying to determine what happened. Acceptance, forgiveness, and the ability to move on take courage. You may never understand what happened to cause the slip-up. But know you cannot control the slip-ups, stumbling blocks, or stepping stones. You can only control how you react when they show up.
So do not let a slip-up or a stumbling block sidetrack you because it could land you on the right stepping stone to share a greater purpose in life. Be the solution daily in the life of others. Your choice can impact the lives of others in more ways than you think!