No matter how you're feeling, no matter the stress level, you can always get up and dance, says Professor Jerome (Jerry) Murphy. This is one solution proposed in his new Harvard Education Press title, Dancing in the Rain: Leading with Compassion, Vitality, and Mindfulness in Education, a book designed to give education leaders the tools to handle the pressures of the profession.
"Mindfulness, at its essence, is a special way of paying attention," says Murphy, citing Jon Kabat-Zinn, a leader in the mindfulness movement. "It really is about trying to figure out where your attention is, where to place your attention, and how you can get greater control of your attention — and in the process of that, you can do a better job of dealing with stress."
In this edition of the Harvard EdCast, Murphy, a former dean of HGSE, shares his perspective on helping education leaders thrive under pressure by developing the inner strengths of mindfulness and self-compassion, expressing emotions wisely, and maintaining a clear focus on the values that matter most.
The Harvard EdCast is a weekly series of podcasts, available on the Harvard University iTunes U page, that features a 15-20 minute conversation with thought leaders in the field of education from across the country and around the world. Hosted by Matt Weber, the Harvard EdCast is a space for educational discourse and openness, focusing on the myriad issues and current events related to the field.