Aug 2 • 59M

Podcast Ep 15: Pause & Presence in School Leadership w/ Sean Gaillard

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Sara Candela
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Episode details

Today, we delve into the concept of presence as a leader and the challenges that can hinder our ability to be fully present. Our guest, Sean Gaillard, shares his personal experiences and emphasizes the importance of aligning presence for oneself and for loved ones in order to better serve others. We explore various obstacles that can impede presence, including external and internal noise, doubts, pressure, and the lack of value placed on presence in today's digital world.

Listen as Sean and I discuss what it means to need presence as a leader, to respect your biological and mental need for pause in your day, and the role of self-awareness in being effective at any mindful routine. 


0:01:53 The Power of Presence in Personal and Professional Life

0:06:01 Overcoming Physical Distance through Intentional Engagement

0:11:35 A Father's Powerful Presence

0:15:05 Solitude and Creativity

0:22:02 The Need for Mental Release and Roaming Thoughts

0:25:07 Creating Dedicated "White Space" for Thinking and Dreaming

0:27:41 Presence as a Pathway to Connection and Listening

0:30:15 The Ripple Effect of Being Present in a Conversation

0:34:36 The Power of Creativity and Joy in Music

0:39:10 Connectedness and Impact on Others

0:43:38 Mindfulness, Empathy, and Connecting with Others

0:51:51 The Importance of Checking In and Walking the Building

0:57:19 Sean's Perspective on Building-Wide Practices for Personal Engagement

Links Mentioned

Reading: The Great Gatsby 

Crucial Influence: Leadership Skills to Create Lasting Behavior Change

Brothers and Sisters 

Listening: Tony Bennett

Follow Sean on Twitter & IG: @smgaillard

On the web: #PrincipalLinerNotes Podcast on Twitter and Spotify

Sean’s Attention Method - Guide your days and activities with bookends - “the beginning will impact the middle.”


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  • Music: “Goodnight, Shapeshifter” by MusicForNothing, used under Creative Commons BY-ND 3.0.

Audio Editing & Production: Tim Belmont (@tbelmontedu)