When I started my Twitter account for The Zen Teacher I had four followers by the end of the day–two of whom were colleagues at my own school.  Not exactly the circulation of The New York Times, but it was a start.  

Yet I found myself intimidated by all the other teachers—some of whom I knew personally—who had hundreds, if not thousands of followers.  Similarly, a successful comedian, who I went to high school with, has nearly seven hundred thousand Twitter followers.  Nearly three quarters of a million people (!) hear his random musings the nano-second he presses the “Tweet” button.

“How do they DO it?” I wondered.  “What does it TAKE?”  The answer? They do it slowly.  Over time.

Financial expert Dave Ramsey often refers to “death by a thousand cuts,” but I prefer marketing whiz Seth Godin’s more whimsical, and moister, metaphor: “Drip. Drip. Drip.”  The key, he says, is to lay down the drips as you go. 

In other words, slather that mortar when and where you can, but build the wall one brick at a time.  Not only will your wall be built, but the foundation will be stronger if you haven’t rushed it in your haste and enthusiasm. 

Remember this the next time you want to implement the ENTIRE vocabulary program by Thanksgiving or attend EVERY technology-in-the-classroom inservice offered at your district.  Teachers are passionate; it can be painful to wait.  But even if you want to be the best teacher in the world, you must start with one step.  Then another.  Be patient and present in the moment and, as those moments knit together, you’ll get there.

After four days, I had over 20 Twitter followers, some of whom I did not even know personally.  Random people who seem to like what I have to say.  That’s a win, folks.  Rome wasn’t built in a day, although I suspect that had something to do with The Teamsters and Organized Crime.  

But my point is: I’ll get there.  Eventually.  So will you.

One step at a time.

Drip by Drip.  TZT