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  • The power of motivation - Action Jackson

    By Suzi Bewell


    How Action Jackson changed my life at #eTuk15

    The eTwinning conference has long been my annual CPD highlight but this year really did go beyond all my expectations.  I agreed to blog about Action Jackson’s session for several reasons.

    1. My other half is a life coach, emotional intelligence and NLP expert so I am well versed in this kind of stuff;
    2. Action Jackson is a cool name and one I sensed strongly that I would not forget in a hurry;
    3. I liked the positive sound of his session and, fast approaching the end of a very long year in University, I felt the need for an injection of the ‘good stuff’!

    I tweeted Action Jackson the week before the conference to tell him I was very excited to meet him in person and he replied!  An air of anticipation and expectation had definitely been created.

    The session itself was, hand on heart, the best CPD I have had in my entire teaching career…by a long shot.

    Below are the highlights:

    Highlight #1

    Action asked delegates (some of who were clearly a little bit ‘weirded out’) to write down 15 reasons why they are amazing.  Well versed in this kind of parlance thanks to my husband, Dr Bewell, I had no problems with this.

    Action then asked us to repeat the activity for someone we knew (for this I chose my husband, who is a good egg and a huge inspiration to me, generally).

    My list:

    1 creative

    2 fun

    3 clever

    4 funny

    5 quirky

    6 maverick

    7 joyful

    8 spiritual

    9 a great mum

    10 a loving wife


    11 a superb teacher

    12 a loyal friend

    13 a talented linguist

    14 pretty

    15 inspirational


    My list for Michael:

    1 clever

    2 fit

    3 funny

    4 special

    5 a fab hubby

    6 a brill dad

    7 hard working

    8 loving

    9 a good friend

    10 silly

    11 cool

    12 awesome

    13 fun

    14 lively

    15 kooky



    Reflection #1

    What surprised me hugely was how many of the attendees really struggled to get beyond 3 or 4 for themselves but how they all were frantically writing stuff down about others. Interesting, indeed.

    An important lesson learned: Why, as teachers do we seriously value others (generally our students and often our teaching peers) but rarely give ourselves the credit we so often deserve? 

    Action set out to challenge this!  In honesty, I don’t believe all of those 15 things of myself all of the time, but I know that I have the capacity to be all those things some of the time.  I realised that I perhaps value myself and my skill set more than most.  This was a revelation.

    Highlight #2

    Action Jackson is a lover of cheesecake.  And of funky music it would seem.  He played some cool tunes and made us ‘get our groove on’ and really pushed some delegates to get outside their comfort zone

    Reflection #2

    It felt a bit silly…but at the same time, it felt GOOD.  I pondered after the session on this question: How are we supposed to grow and develop as teachers / individuals if we are not prepared to push ourselves to do something out of the ordinary every now and then?

    Highlight #3

    I won an ‘I am amazing!’ t-shirt for completing the ’15 reasons why I am Amazing!’ activity in record time!  I also got a badge, which I gave to my amazing friend Laura, who is indeed amazing even if she doesn’t see it herself!


    The t-shirt felt like a reminder of something I sometimes forget – I am amazing…not at everything or indeed all of the time, but enough.  I am good and I am enough.  Myself and one or two other delegates (you know who you are) got quite emotional in the final plenary task…

    Prologue …

    I am about to set up my own business and  I have a renewed confidence and a lust for life again.  ACTION JACKSON – YOU are amazing.  Thank you.  You just helped to change the course of my life.