Do you have any hidden delights in your life? Gretchen Rubin, one of my beloved authors and podcasters, recommends that we all find ways to add a few hidden delights to our lives to boost our happiness and well-being. This might be a chocolate treat in a desk drawer, a colorful piece of artwork in your closet or a sticker adhered to the wall in the oddest of places simply to make your smile.

Recently, I was gathering digital texts to read with some young students and I stumbled across this book that reminded me of this concept: Follow Your Feet. On the very first page, the reader is urged to ‘follow your feet and have some fun’. And the image shows a child’s barefoot...with emojis inked on the bottom of each toe:

I think we could all use some hidden delights in our lives. So, I instantly drew an emoji on one of my toes just so I could see it later. Really. And I think you should, too. 

I felt like finding and reading that particular book at that particular time was a sign that I needed some hidden delights in my life, especially my work life. So, I started a list of possibilities on how to bring hidden delights into our work as coaches to lift teachers’ spirits (and our own!). Here are eleven ways to get you started, a mix of in-person and virtual hidden delights:

  • Write happy notes on sticky notes for teachers to find in unexpected places. 
  • Add a sticker to the inside of a curriculum manual or professional text. 
  • Tape a funny meme on the back door of the bathroom. 
  • Link funny memes and short videos to QR codes and post them around the school in unexpected places: in the faculty room, on the copier, on the back of a bathroom stall or even pop-up style on a presentation slide in a virtual professional development session for some unexpected fun. 
  • Keep a stash of Dove chocolates in your office (you know, the ones with the fun messages inside!) and surprise teachers with a sweet treat.
  • Send a ‘just because’ email and include a fun and unexpected bitmoji.
  • Leave something unexpected in random teachers’ mailboxes, just because. The Target bins are perfect for this!
  • Play music at the start of professional learning sessions (in person or virtual). Ditch the classical music and amp up the fun.
  • Put a burst of virtual confetti in a routine email. Outlook offers ‘joyful animations’ to liven up emails. Make use of them. Often. 
  • Write encouraging messages on pencils and strategically hide them throughout the building for teachers to find and keep. In this case, the hidden delight keeps on giving each time they see the pencil!
  • Send teachers fun and motivating desktop screensavers. You’ll find many that you can customize and make your own on Canva!

So, there are eleven ways to bring hidden delights into our daily coaching. Choose one each week and see what a difference it can make to our teaching and coaching spirits!

Share your ideas for coaching hidden delights in the comments below!

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