by Michele Kersten-Hart
Oakland Community College
Bloomfield Hills, WI
Marketing and communication specialists at community colleges are like superheroes who are trying to increase enrollment in a single bound, all while budgets are getting cut faster than a speeding bullet. Community colleges have the unique power to change lives and, as Spiderman would remind us, “With great power comes great responsibility.”
Sometimes, though, our superhero capes slip or our tights run and we need a little help. Here are a few ideas that can protect your day from kryptonite-like disruptions.
1. Theme song: Find your theme song, a song that speaks to you and pumps you up. Listen on your drive into the office. My theme song is Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground.” It helps me to get my “happy” on.
2. Comedy: During the day when things just aren’t going your way, watch a short YouTube video that will make you giggle. After all, laughter is key to happiness. I recommend, Uptown Funk Mashup, and I double-dog dare you to watch Tim Conway and Harvey Korman skits and not crack a smile.
3. Office Meditation: I realize you can’t just lie on the office floor and meditate, but you can take a minute (or three) to close your eyes and reset yourself. There are many meditation apps available. I use “Calm.” It’s been a real lifesaver.
4. Essential Oil Diffusers: Essential oils are known for offering benefits like mood elevation, warding off illness and improving cognitive function – why not give them a try. I purchased a diffuser from InnoGear that I can plug into my laptop. There are loads of essential oils to choose from. My favorite is eucalyptus.
5. Gratitude Lists: I started a gratitude list several years ago because it’s so easy to get wrapped up in day-to-day goings on and forget to stop and smell the roses. To start your list, jot down three things each day that you’re grateful for. Try to come up with three new things each day. You’ll be surprised how much you have to be grateful for.
6. Random Acts of Kindness: I drink Diet Coke pretty much every morning like many drink coffee. Once a week, in the drive-thru at McDonald’s, I pay for the order of the person behind me. There’s no better feeling than doing something kind for someone.
Remember fellow superheroes, we’re making a difference in so many lives. What we do day in and day out is powerful and important. After all, “This is what we are, this is who we are, come hell or high water. If we deny it, we deny everything we’ve ever done, everything we’ve ever fought for.” – Green Arrow.
Michele Kersten-Hart is the NCMPR vice president/president-elect and the manager of multimedia and web services at Oakland Community College in Michigan.