How To Conquer Fear And Change Your Teaching Life Forever

Smart Classroom Management: How To Conquer Fear And Change Your Teaching Life ForeverThe Smart Classroom Management approach works.

It works for elementary school teachers. It works for middle and high school teachers.

It works for new teachers and veterans alike.

It works regardless of where you teach, who your students are, or whether or not you have the most challenging class in the school.

We’ve heard from thousands of teachers who’ve put our strategies into practice and experienced remarkable success.

They can now walk into any classroom in the world, gain control, and create a learning experience their students love being part of.

And so can you.

You can eliminate your stress. You can cut your work hours. You can have the motivated and well-behaved class you’ve always wanted.

But there is one thing that just may be standing in your way.

It’s something I see in the eyes of some of the teachers I coach. On the one hand, after we talk awhile, they’re excited. They’re relieved. They’re eager to get started.

But on the other hand, I see fear.

I see fear because much of what we recommend here at SCM is unconventional. It swims against the tide of what they’ve been told to do since their days as a student teacher.

Our goal here at SMC isn’t for you to just get through the day. It isn’t just to survive. It isn’t just to get a little better with short-sighted strategies you’ve heard a million times before.

Our goal is a complete transformation of your classroom. It’s no less than happy, productive, and well-behaved students that you love teaching.

The loftiness of this expectation—which is doable for any teacher—along with the unique simplicity of SCM, can be scary.

Being exceptionally good at what you do can be scary. Eschewing what other teachers at your school are doing can be scary.

But to be the teacher you know you were meant to be, you must toughen your resolve and push through it. Because fear will give voice to the doubts in your head.

It will give voice to the lie that your class is too far gone and your old habits are too deeply ingrained.

But here’s the straight scoop: You need only push through a little.

Because, once you put our strategies into practice, in a very short time—sometimes minutes—you’ll notice a definitive change in your students.

It may be their calmness. It may be their smiles and eagerness to please you. It may be their attentiveness, respect for the rules, or kindness toward each other.

This doesn’t mean that you’ll have the perfect class right away or that you won’t make mistakes.

But the moment you experience the undeniable proof that the new you is having the desired effect, you’ll know:

I can do this. I can be the teacher I envision for myself.

So cast your fears aside, just for a moment, and put us to the test.

Spend time in our archive, pick up one or more of our books, embrace the philosophy. Learn not just a few of our survival strategies, but the whole enchilada.

Take a small step of faith.

It will change your teaching life forever.

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26 Responses to How To Conquer Fear And Change Your Teaching Life Forever

  1. Anthony Butler October 15, 2016 at 9:52 am #

    Thanks for sharing this! Fear stops so many educators( myself included) from changing for the better. I am learning to face my fears with boldness. I learn more about myself when I decide to put fear in its place! Being afraid to change for the better is sad. Each time I choose to step out in faith I gain more confidence to conquer fear in multiple areas.

    Keep up the great work Micheal!

    • Michael Linsin October 15, 2016 at 11:09 am #

      Thanks Anthony! Good to hear from you again. Will do.


  2. Sue October 15, 2016 at 10:03 am #

    Thank you for the encouragement! I have the most rambunctious 3rd grade class that I’ve ever had in my 16 years of teaching and I’m changing the way I do almost EVERYTHING with them. Your book, The Happy Teachers Habits, is helping as well. Thank you!

    • Michael Linsin October 15, 2016 at 11:10 am #

      It’s my pleasure, Sue. I’m glad you like the book.


  3. Jennifer Sutherland October 15, 2016 at 10:14 am #

    Thanks a lot for this great support. Even I have been giving classes Europe and now in Chile for 45 years, receiving this is always useful.
    Jennifer Sutherland

    • Michael Linsin October 15, 2016 at 11:10 am #

      You’re welcome, Jennifer.


  4. Whitney October 15, 2016 at 11:55 am #

    This is encouraging. I am a first year teacher and came into the year excited and ready to use your techniques but by a month in I was so overwhelmed and exhausted. I am struggling being consistent and I am losing control of my class even though I try to reteach and model the rules and consequences. I want to be passionate about my job and my students but a lot of days I just feel like I will not make it.

    • Michael Linsin October 15, 2016 at 12:21 pm #

      Hi Whitney,

      Without consistency, as a new teacher in particular, it’s easy to lose control. Get this down first and the rest becomes a lot easier.


    • Jenny October 16, 2016 at 7:13 am #

      Whitney. I really have empathy with new teachers as the kids of today know just how and when to press your buttons. Even as a seasoned teacher, I had to learn to change and the one thing that has made a huge difference is: Always be gentle, no matter what the situation is. Think with a gentle heart and speak with a gentle tone and mind. If you just start with that one thing,and keep that one thing going, things will start to change. Blessings. Jenny

  5. Linda F. October 15, 2016 at 12:03 pm #

    I started Smart Classroom strategies toward the end of last year. I began again at the beginning of this year. And THIS year I have the best class I have ever had in my life. The wonderful thing is that my students know they are good! And they like to prove it. Day after day I am amazed. I guess that you would call me strict because we strictly follow the rules, but I never raise my voice. It just amazes me!!! Thank you, Michael! (P.S. I didn’t know I had it in me!)

    • Michael Linsin October 15, 2016 at 12:13 pm #

      Way to go, Linda!


  6. Jeanne T. October 15, 2016 at 4:08 pm #

    This is so true! I’ve been teaching for 29 years and started using SCM 3-4 years ago. I am happy to say this is my best year yet!! Personally, my weakness has always been consistency and the SCM has helped me so much with that. Even when I first started it, I wouldn’t be consistent. I would give in and not be as strict with some some students. Now, I am
    super consistent and teaching is much more rewarding! I’m enjoying my middle – schoolers so much 🙂
    After reading Happy Teacher Habits this summer, I was determined to toughen my resolve, as you say, and give it my all.
    It’s made a wonderful difference. Thanks for all you do for teachers!

    • Michael Linsin October 15, 2016 at 5:30 pm #

      Thanks for sharing your success, Jeanne! I’m thrilled to hear how well you’re doing. Way to go!


  7. Kate October 15, 2016 at 6:15 pm #

    In which of your books do these strategies you speak of exist? Another commenter spoke of the Smart Classroom strategies – are these outlined in Happy Teacher Habits, the Classroom Management Secrets book or Dream Class? You definitely have me curious, as I have been struggling for a few years now.

    • Michael Linsin October 16, 2016 at 7:28 am #

      Hi Kate,

      The Classroom Management Secret
      is probably the best place to start, followed by The Happy Teacher Habits.


      • Kate October 16, 2016 at 9:53 pm #

        Yay! I already own The Classroom Management Secret. Now to find the time to read it. Thank you so much!!

  8. Dan October 15, 2016 at 9:22 pm #

    I have been reading your articles for a few years now, and I can personally attest that your insight has been tremendous useful to my classroom management. Thank you!

    I never thought much about how unconventional your philosophy was because it just makes os much sense. But it is true that many teachers would find it to run counter to much popular wisdom, particularly the fifteen minute time out. That is about the only advice I have not sought to incorporate into my classroom ONLY because it would be breaking my school’s rules, which is to have time out no longer than the student’s age (but in minutes, not years!).

    Thank you for the great wisdom you have provided on your web-site, Michael. I have really appreciated the continuous support, which greatly supports me in my own reflection as well.

    • Michael Linsin October 16, 2016 at 7:28 am #

      You’re most welcome, Dan.


  9. Ahsan October 16, 2016 at 2:24 am #

    Your Smart Classroom strategies are of huge benefits . I wish to get some tips on voice management.I have been teaching for more than 5 years and have perfectly clear audible not unpleasant(if not very pleasant) voice my students like me but I feel my tone is somthing at which they are less comfortable or with less ease.

    • Michael Linsin October 16, 2016 at 7:31 am #

      Hi Ahsan,

      If you search the site (right side of menu bar) for “speaking,” you’ll find several articles on the topic.


  10. Mary Pat Kanaley October 16, 2016 at 10:22 am #

    I love your advice, through this subscription and your books. This year everything has been going great ( I’m a middle school art teacher) until this past 2 weeks, when the added more students 5 from the Developmental learning class with a Para ed. The administration gave me more stools, but the classroom is packed. There is absolutely no place for time out. Since loosing that consequence, I’ve seen behavior ramp out from some of my more loud and active students. Any suggestions? Your rules have really worked, I don’t want to have to send them out of the room, since then they miss the learning, and seeing what they miss.

    • Michael Linsin October 16, 2016 at 10:45 am #

      Hi Mary Pat,

      Remember, time-out is a symbolic separation from the class they enjoy being part of, so even if you have to move a desk just slightly separated from the group, it’s worth it. The other alternative is the high school plan, which doesn’t use time-out as a consequence.


  11. Claudia October 16, 2016 at 2:05 pm #

    My principal came in the other day for a short (20 minutes or so), unplanned observation. After she left she told me my classroom management was excellent, I knew it was working because I can see it and feel it. I am at a new school and this principal is new to this school too, because of her and her presence and words, the fear I normally have has been going away quickly. I always knew I could be a great teacher and with her honest, kind feedback. my fear has been subsiding. Thank you for your blog and your book “Dream Class”.


    • Michael Linsin October 16, 2016 at 2:34 pm #

      You’re welcome, Claudia. Congratulations!


  12. Sincere October 17, 2016 at 9:12 am #

    Your emails lately have only been a presentation of a particular problem. Most blogs in the past you present the problem, the strategy and then the encouragement. Why did you change the way you write?

    • Michael Linsin October 17, 2016 at 4:16 pm #

      Hi Sincere,

      This article was different than most, but rest assured, nothing has changed. If you look at the previous 12-15 articles, you’ll find that they’ve followed the same general formula you mentioned—as will next week’s article. Occasionally I have to address a pressing issue for many of my readers. This was just one of those times.