Did you ever wonder what the New Year’s baby would be like if the cherub was a Spark? Since there seems to be a discomfort with pointy objects that poke people, I imagine craft time would be a no-scissors affair, and winter camping (that little angel is never wearing more than a diaper!) would be out.
New Year’s and resolutions seem to be on everyone’s mind as we enter the second week of 2012. From suddenly over packed gyms to less people in smoking shelters, most resolutions I read are about a new, healthier you. But can we take a moment to appreciate that part of being a ‘happy and healthier you‘ requires that you recognize that your Guiding life is part of who you are? It should be identified as something we take a moment to ensure is a happy and healthy aspect of your entire life in the new year!
I have come up with three Guiding Resolutions to help in case you feel like you are in the mid-winter slump, going into the second half of the Guiding year. (Maybe we should have “Guiding New Year” resolutions the first week of September!)
- Be daring. When it comes to program work, step outside your normal comfort zone, or for some, step away from that calendar of program work that a Guider many, many years ago wrote for your Unit that you follow, each and every year. Remember, you are now the Unit Guider and you took on this role to help girls in your community. Find out what girls at your branch age need to know how to do and may never have been taught before. When I had a Guide group, I took on the WAGGGS and UN challenge on AIDS and HIV. On the surface, you would think that’s for the older girls. But when your Guides are discussing boyfriends and kissing, then this is the time to talk about respecting their bodies. An email about the WAGGGS/UN challenge criteria went out to the parents of girls in my Unit, letting them know the topic of the Unit meeting, and if they preferred, they could have their daughter not attend. Guess what? Not one parent kept their girl home. And I hope that by daring to do something different, I succeeded in the reason I am Guider: helping young girls in my community.
- Be an ambassador. I have mentioned in a past blog post ways to recruit leaders, but let’s take that one step further – you can’t recruit volunteers who will have a passion to be the support that the girls (and you) need if we have a bad attitude. Sometimes the paperwork and the planning and the meetings can be overwhelming, I completely concur. But each September, we come back. Think about your first meeting back in September and how you felt. Remember that feeling when you are speaking to a potential leader, or Unit helper, or when you are in a room of girl Members. As a Guider, you are automatically given the title of Ambassador (without the satin sash, mace, pomp and circumstance). Take this quote (courtesy of Oprah) to your next Unit/area/district/provincial/national meeting, and share it with the other Ambassadors in the room: Please be responsible for the energy you bring!
- Be wise in the use of resources you have. One of my biggest pet peeves is when you are planning an event and someone says “the Rangers can work that” or “put the Pathfinders to work!” (and truly your other Unit leaders and parental helpers can be interchanged here). Yes, at this level the girls need to learn organizational and managerial skills. But how often does your area do an event that includes them – and they are not just manning a station or supervising an activity? Why not make a resolution this year you will hold an event completely run by Guiders, that has program work for the Pathfinders and Rangers (or a special thank you coffee night for your leaders/parental helpers)? You can even have the girls plan and manage their own event! But they and the other leaders/helpers are not built-in babysitters. This is the target group we don’t want to lose because they (if we all have the right attitude) will be the next Ambassadors!
By guest blogger and Guider Sarah: Sarah is our 2011 most read blogger, reaching the highest one day total reads of her post: “Bustin’ a Century Year Old Girl Guide Myth”! In response, Sarah says: “Just wanted to thank everyone who reads my posts and comments, and “likes” them. The recent WordPress report was a fantastic way to start my new year, and I thank you!”
Check out her own blog ‘Sarah Smells the Roses‘, as well as her other blog posts for Girl Guides of Canada:
- Girl Guide Membership Expiry? Never!
- From Frazzled to Dartmouth Shore Area Special Events Team Member
- Princess Industrial Complex
- Bustin’ a Century Year Old Girl Guide Myth
- There Were No Sexy Nurses at the First Halloween
- Review for GGC of the Coleman Camping Cookbook and Meal Planner App
- Why Every Brownie Should Have a Camp Blanket
- I Camp Therefore I Have My Camp Blanket
Interested in becoming a guest blogger? Or do you have an idea for an interesting blog post? Email us at marketing1 (@) girlguides.ca!