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Principal’s Panui – 22 June 2018

My message to students this week.

Have you taken any increased ownership and responsibility for the year in the last week? You have 5 hours in class and up to another 90 minutes at school a day plus whatever time you choose to invest in your human capital at home.

Strive for your personal best and nobody will ever question your work ethic or commitment. In doing so you are building trust in your own ability and your levels of resilience will increase as a result. You may not notice an immediate change in tangible results but you will be getting better at the processes that create the foundation for results.

And just to give this some balance, we must always remember ‘to never compare ourselves to the best that others can be, only to the personal best we can be.’ Sometimes despite our best efforts we have to accept that on some days good is good enough. There are a number of you, who work very hard and strive for personal excellence in all that that you do, who need to cut yourself some slack.

So for those of you who might sometimes be too hard on yourself, please appreciate yourself for who you are, and the good that you do. Please do not focus too much on what you didn’t do as well as you would have preferred.

Perfect is not always best.

An old Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a stick which she carried across her neck when she went to collect water from the river.  One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water.  At the end of the long walk from the river to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.  Every day the woman brought home only one and a half pots of water.

Of course the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments.  But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it was supposed to do.

After years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, the cracked pot spoke sadly to the old woman. “I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house.”

The old woman smiled and asked, “Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot’s side?  That’s because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them.  For years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my house.  Without you being just the way you are, I would not have this beauty in my life.”

Each of us has our own unique flaws.  It’s these cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together more interesting and rewarding.

Please remember to appreciate yourself for the things that make you the unique and special individual you are.  Remember to take each person for who they are and look for the good in them. Enjoy every day and remember to always appreciate the flowers, on your side of the path.

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