“One step at a time
see what you can find
with one step at a time
One step at a time
what is on your mind
with one step at a time”
“One step at a time see what you can find with one step at a time One step at a time what is on your mind with one step at a time” Putting one foot in front of the other seems like such a natural thing to us. Since we were little, we’ve taken each step after the next without thinking much about it. When I was introduced to the concept of mindful walking, I felt so grateful to be able to do such a simple task. I was reintroduced to my body, rediscovered the soles of my feet, and I felt as if my moving legs were anchoring me into the present moment. I wrote the song, “One Step at a Time,” to introduce children to this idea of mindful walking. As I was writing it I realized that it had a double meaning: taking one step at a time was also a metaphor for how I’d like to live my life.
As an early childhood educator, it’s easy for me to get caught up in the daily chaos of the classroom. Multitasking all day, talking to one child while listening to another, cutting with one hand while gluing with the other—sometimes my days can feel like movies that I’m watching in fast-forward. It’s like I can’t make out any words, only catch clips of images here and there, and I’m completely confused. I imagine most teachers have days like this. Writing this song reminded me that I have the choice to take each day one step at a time. Even when I can’t seem to slow down, I can choose to focus on whatever task I’m doing at the moment. And if I’m doing two things at once, maybe I need to stop and just focus on one.
As teachers, it’s so easy for us to feel like we need to do it all. We want to get everything done for our students because we care so much about them. But sometimes we need to slow down and think about what is right in front of us; rather than worrying about finishing each day’s race, we need to focus on taking just that one step. Then, when we look back on our days, maybe we can remember them clearly—like a movie playing in regular speed and not in fast-forward.