129: Leticia Ramos – What Happens When a Teacher Finds Her Core

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Writing a Book That Will Change Your Life

Speaker 1: Welcome to the authors who lead podcast. This podcast is dedicated to you. People who want to be inspired by authors leaders and the messages they share. This is such an important podcast to us because we help uncover what goes on behind the scenes. When authors are writing their book, we talk about the process. We talk about where they get big ideas and you can listen in on those conversations. We can't wait for you to join us. So let's get started

Speaker 2: Thrown us here back with another episode of authors who lead. I'm so thrilled to have one of my dear friends. And one of my students, I would like to say the TCL Ramos is here. He has been an elementary school teacher. Who's passionate about working with students and creating extraordinary learning opportunities for them. She has over 20 years of experience working in education, and she has spent those last 10 years working with educational leaders and developing leadership trainings for children and teens. I'm so thrilled to have her here because watching her follow a path that I followed when I was becoming an author working in my classroom, sometimes writing in the very space that I was teaching. It's really inspiring to see or hear in one of our newest teacherpreneur projects, as she's involving launching a new podcast, which is named after her book, the core of teaching, while she invites all these wonderful people to join her about why teaching is soul, soul feeling.

Speaker 2: Let the welcome to the show. Thank you also. It's good to be here. It's good to see you. Thank you so much for inviting me. I know what's so amazing. It's been just over a year that we first met, right? Yes. And the time in which, you know, we had so much in common when I taught in LA area. When I first started teaching, I do have an elementary credential. I don't know if I told you that I mainly taught, taught middle school, but there's something about the heart of a teacher that sort of rises within you and starts to make the call. Maybe I should be doing something even more. Not because we don't love teaching, but because we're sit there every day, inspiring students to believe in themselves to take a risk, put themselves out there, but like me, I know I was a little bit terrified to start to write my truth down on the page.

Speaker 2: Let's talk a little bit about your book and about your story and about why writing a book has been so important to you. Well, I'll tell you this. I, so you touched a little bit upon it. Yes. You know, the heart of a teacher it's filled with so many things, you know, smiles, giggles, comments, hogs, the things you see in a classroom is just one thing that things you see outside is another what the things you hear from a student, it's a whole new world. And, you know, as educators, we're constantly reminding students to live up to their potential, to do their best, to remember that no dream is ever too small to chase. And, you know, I had always thought about writing and I just kind of put it on the back of my head. I'll get to it someday. But it wasn't until one of my students actually asked me that question simply just kind of looked at me and said, Ramos.

Speaker 3: You're always asking us to write. You're always asking us to do better. Where's your book? Where's your work?

Speaker 2: And

Speaker 3: Oh yeah. You know, the mind of a seven and an eight year old, you know, second grader in room 20, it's constantly working. And when I heard those words, I, so many thoughts crossed my mind and I knew I needed to do something. And I thank him for that today.

Speaker 2: I heard it from a little bird, told me that you found out your book was live in a different way than most people do, which is, you know, your publisher would say, Hey, your book's live. How did you find out what it was? I want to hear the story.

Speaker 3: Oh my gosh. Okay. So it's September 11th and I'm getting myself ready to go on, live with my students, right. Or distance learning. And I had this whole thing set up. So I'm waiting. My kids are already logging on and I have my phone on my side by my side. And I look over it and I get a message from a parent last Joe, for those of you out there who are educators, they know what I'm talking about. And it said, congratulations, ms. Ramos, I just bought your book. And of course, I'm looking on the side of the screen and I could barely see my phone. And I'm like, what? My book is out. Oh my gosh, I'm live with my kids. I couldn't help it. I just, I was overwhelmed with emotions and, and I just felt my eyes just get full, you know, with tears.

Speaker 3: And it was just so many things cross my mind at that moment. And I guess what I saw in my book, I talk so much about students being those wonderful leaders, those words of compassion and caring thoughts that are constantly coming towards us guess who were the first people that I got to share this news with my kids, they were right there. My husband wasn't around it. Wasn't my mom. I called it wasn't my BFF either. It was my kids. They were right in front of me, my students. And they were ready to know like, why was acting that way? What was wrong with their teacher? And they understood, you know? And so there it is. Sometimes you don't have to go that far. There it's right there. Right in front of us. We just have to be willing to look and listen and just let it come and take it all in. Right.

Speaker 2: And how perfectly it was. We didn't know what happened. It happened quicker than it's supposed to. Cause it takes a while to get it to kind of approve. And for some reason, your booklet maybe divinely happened, right. When you were students, because that's the beginning of this process, right?

Speaker 3: Oh, I guess because let me tell you, it was just one message after another, on my phone too, by the time I went to my first break, I had a few messages, you know, let the ms. Ramos. And it was just an overwhelming feeling. I was in shock all of Friday. And I cannot explain what that felt like, but let me tell you if there's anybody out there listening right now, who keeps thinking, I want to write a book and keep saying, I am going to write a book, do it. It's so transformational, you learn so much about yourself along the way. And the words that we put on a page can have such a significant impact and such a deep, profound meaning, and be exactly what another person needed to hear and read at that given moment in time, it's been the best experience. One of the best experiences for me was writing this book.

Speaker 2: That's awesome. Persona people that talk about it. I was one of them and I didn't do it just out of fear. I mean, I gotta be honest. I just was afraid that maybe I wouldn't have enough to say or what do people think or what if it was no good? What if, what if it was bad? What if no one read it, all the things that go through your head. What was the one thing that you think was the biggest challenge or obstacle during the writing process that you had as you were like doing the process of getting the book, you know, from idea to something that you can hold.

Speaker 3: Some of those things that I experienced for sure. Of course, crunch time, right? Making that time. When I figured, you know what, we all have the same amount of time in a day, what am I thinking? That's a story I was telling myself, I'm occupied doing other things, but you know what everybody is, but it's making that commitment. And even taking those small action moments, those small action steps to get you ahead every single day. And I kept at it and I kept at it and I kept at it. And sometimes it was very challenging, but I was determined to do the absolute best every day. So one thing I had in my mind, because I knew I needed to commit if I wanted to fulfill this passion industry that I had was to try to do a little bit more every day. So I kept a log. And then you introduced us to that as well, you know, tracking your work. And I would track the words that I would write every day, even if it was written in a notebook and I'm old school for me, there's just something about that relationship that I have with my pen, my pencil, my paper, my notepad. I take it everywhere. I go. It's in my car. Yeah. Call me crazy. But you know what? That's just how I operate. So there's just something tangible about having that in front of you and being able to

Speaker 2: Have you gotten the physical copy of your book in your hands yet

Speaker 3: Soon I haven't yet. And I can't wait. I don't even know

Speaker 2: You're going to really blow your mind. So it's super exciting that, but I want you to share a picture and tag me on social media when it happens. There's nothing like it. So, you know, getting sane, committed to it. That's the thing is commitment. It's not knowing everything cause certainly you didn't know everything about writing a book before you started and yes, I'm here to help you. That's part of my role, but you know, one of the things that I try to explain to new writers is knowing how to write a book is nothing you can know until you're done, right? You're an author now. And you know what it is to write a book. But before that, there's no way I can tell you. I can tell you the steps, but that doesn't explain what it means to do the work. It's a whole nother thing, but we're surprised by the fact that the way I teach, which is we spend a lot of time thinking about a book, a lot of time mapping and visualizing and planning. In fact, it's the first couple of months, I think we didn't even allow you to write, which is like counterintuitive. But then when you get the bulk of the book out in a really short period of time in like 30 to 45 days, and it is a mad sprint, what was that process like waking, you know, finding the message, finding out how to write it organizing and then actually,

Speaker 3: Oh boy, what a question? First of all, let me tell you, I felt like I was at one student, you know, and you were that teacher cause you were, that's what you were to me and you still are besides now a great friend. There's so many times when you're in the classroom teaching and the kids are just so eager to jump on and say teacher, when can we start teacher teacher, can I do more? And you're like, hold on, kids. That was me. And I had to really think about not doing that. It was hard. It was very challenging for me. I'm very visual. So for me, every time we had an opportunity to share and to discuss our thoughts, I always wanted to write just because I'm very, I do that often, you know, reflective state, I start typing, I start writing and I had to stop myself from those, from those things. And I knew that there was a purpose and I just needed to be patient with myself. So I had to practice the art of patients and, you know, I had to untrain myself from those habits that I already are embedded in, in me and who I am and develop new writing, a new writing style and you habits to develop this trait of becoming a published author.

Speaker 2: Thank you so much for just kind of expressing, trusting the process. You know, part of the process of becoming a writer is, you know, we get stuck in our heads, right? What advice would you give anybody out there? Who's maybe thinking to have a book inside of them. You know, maybe you've been told you should write a book or maybe you've even thought about some ideas. What advice would you have for that person that's sitting there who might be listening to this thinking about, well, who am I to write a book?

Speaker 3: You know what else I've learned that we all have something very important to contribute in this world. And I learned that in our profession as educators and really in any job that you have, we are providing a service for other people. And so my advice to people that are thinking about writing a book is please do it. Your words can not only empower another individual, not only teach another individual something new, but also you can open yourself to an opportunity to create something huge in the world and impact not just one life, but many. And I think that's what this world needs right now. We need to connect with leaders that are going to support our thinking, support our ability to do better in life and connect with one another and to something greater for this world because we need that.

Speaker 2: Right. That's great advice if you're thinking about it. I think people think that they are waiting for some bigger permission or some bigger voice to say, you're ready. How did you know you were ready?

Speaker 3: You know, as soon I'll tell you this, I don't that anybody will ever really think if they are ready. But I knew that I had so many things inside of me. And I'm thinking when I say things, I'm thinking, I'm telling you that I had a lot of thoughts. I had a lot of ideas and I had brainstormed a lot of things. And I just thought, what if I put this out for others to see and hear, and in the teaching profession, you hear so many things that are not very pleasant about people in education, the whole educational movement. And I thought, you know what? Having this job has been such a great privilege for me and for those people that are out there right now seeking, uh, you know, the opportunity to obtain a job in education. There's so much going on right now.

Speaker 3: There's a really good chance that they're not going to want to do that. But I had more to say, I knew that I wanted to share what it's done for me, cause it's been wonderful for me. And I knew that when my students came to me and said, Hey, ms. Ramos, when are you going to write your new book? I knew that I had to do something almost like in a forceful way because I knew that my stories could do something good for at least one individual. And if it starts with one person, I'm okay with that, it's changing the lives one life at a time, one teacher at a time.

Speaker 2: Great. Well, let's talk about your book, the core of teaching, give listeners a little sense of what your book's about and what you hope to achieve by writing it.

Speaker 3: The book explains the relationships I've developed along the way. So as a teacher, even as a student, when I was a young student in a classroom, as I began to reflect on what I thought I was going to be writing about, I discovered that my thoughts steered into a different direction and it had to do with inspiration, leadership, compassion. And so in my book, I talk about all of those experiences in education that have really impacted my life. They really helped me become a different woman, a different teacher, a different wife, a different individual in this world through teaching, I've been able to discover new things about myself and new abilities to teach from a different platform. I developed a passion for personal development, for educational leadership. I began to grow a business in that field. And in my book, I talk about how there are so many individuals out in this world today that can be that amazing teacher that can create Epic opportunities for not just learning, but to really empower and be that guide that another child needs to set out into this world and do amazing things.

Speaker 2: Great. You know what, when I think about, you know, teach fairs in these times, there's so much more of a challenge right now to, to know how to teach there's one, one way of teaching, which is students show up, you prepare lessons, but now when you don't have the teachers in personally for the time being, perhaps even during the time that people are listening to this, where you have to create these connections with, I always call them young people. They know you're working with something different. It's a virtual space. Not everyone has the same type computer or bandwidth that everybody has the quiet space. Not everybody has the tools that they have, meaning students, you know, they're showing up with all their challenges because they are challenges at home at the moment are probably even greater than they were when they could appear in class. At least in class, they had a place to escape those challenges. What does it look like now? And what sort of advice do you give teachers who are listening, who are trying to find and reconnect with this? The notion of the core of teaching,

Speaker 3: You know, so at this point in time, and this is what I tell myself, and I've been telling my colleagues, please be patient with yourself, give yourself grace. If you're constantly looking for new ways to make your teaching practices better than you're doing the right thing, you have your whole heart in it. I know that collaborating, yeah. Collaborating with your colleagues within your school is very important. Help each other out. Don't be afraid to ask for support and just, you know, what ride the way something good will come out of this. I tell my friends, try to look for the positive. If you can find one positive thing in your day, you're going to feel a lot better about yourself because I know it can be very overwhelming for many people right now.

Speaker 2: Right. You know, what's incredible is I remember I wrote this in a chapter yesterday when I was writing a chapter in a book about persistence, staying the course when something's hard, staying focused on determined, making that deeper commitment. And I was writing about a moment that I wrote my first book and a student was the one that kind of inspired me because they asked me where my book was because I, I spent my, you know, a decade ago, 15 years ago, I started helping young people be published. My goal was to have every one of my eighth grade students be published authors in some way, because I felt if they've got published, they would feel a new sense of being and feel competence. And it does. It makes me feel that way. So why wouldn't it make young people? But the truth was I had never published anything with just my name on it. I would publish anthologies. I was, you know, a contributors to books. I was an editor, but I had never really been my, this is my book with my name. And the students have a powerful way of inspiring teachers who are willing to listen to take action. If any of your students might listen or might hear this, what advice would you give them when they think about taking such a challenging task and deciding to take hold of it?

Speaker 3: Wow. I would just tell them, please continue. You know, I've discovered that children are such amazing leaders and I would just continue to reinforce that, you know, I see it in every child, even with a struggling child in a classroom, there is something about that child. They're the leader inside of them. It's there. And so my take on this is I would continue to remind my students to move forward with that idea, to put that idea into action and execute so that they can get closer to achieving that goal and overcoming their fears and accomplishing their dreams. That's great.

Speaker 2: What insights has your book or being an author helps you become like a better person or a leader now that you've kind of made this big commitment and achieved it?

Speaker 3: Well, I'll tell you this. It's making me want to move into a different direction, continue to teach, which is from a different platform, reach a larger audience and also continue collaborating with educational leaders who have done greater things in the world and who continue to impact the lives of not only teachers, but of people in this entire, you know, in this entire world, because that's what moves me. That's what inspires me. I love to learn. And I know that everybody learns very differently. We all have different skills, but you know what that's, what I think is really important. It's giving yourself that opportunity to be in constant flow and movement, towards gaining you things, perspectives, and knowing that even though it takes a long time at times to get to your goal, you'll get there as long as you commit to it,

Speaker 2: Let the there's so much that I've learned from you, just working with you and watching you grow in your confidence and, uh, write and publish your book. It's really been such a pleasure. I know that your podcast will be successful. I can't wait to see when you send me your picture or share it on social with your book in your hand. One last question. Do you think you'll write another book as this one of many or assist? Like finally I got the one, boom.

Speaker 3: Oh no. I assume I'm already ready. I started book two. So if this, you know what I'm telling you, I got the writing bug in me and it's because of you and your amazing team. And honestly, writing has been extremely transformational for me. I've really been able to, honestly, I can say, I, I feel like I've been able to heal from some of those scars and wounds that I've had, you know, and it's because of the work I've done in the commitment that I, that I stood by to write. As I wrote, I discovered, as I discovered I experienced new things. This has been an extremely, extremely profound and deep connection and experience that I've been able to experience. And I love it. And I'm, I'm ready for book to watch out world,

Speaker 2: Look out there. If people wanted to connect with you, where would they go to kind of connect to learn more about? So I'm sure plenty of teachers are going to want to ask you questions and ask you about your book and why is it worth it and what would you do or what were they

Speaker 3: Well, right now you can reach me on Facebook at [inaudible] or the core of teaching. You could follow me on Instagram at, I am let the Ramos and the core of teaching on Instagram as well

Speaker 2: In the show notes, as, as a link to your book for anyone listening has been such an honor and a pleasure to guide you, but also to have you be amongst the rest of us who can call themselves an author. And I'm so proud of you. Congratulations. If you're out there listening, you are so welcome. If you're listening out there thinking I might want to write a book, maybe I can, maybe I should take the words of letting you do it, right? The book, no, one's going to write the book the way you do, and that's why the world needs you. And you can always go to authors who lead.com. I look for our programs or any of the offerings we have. Thank you so much latte for being here. Oh, you're welcome. Thank you.

Speaker 1: Listening again to another episode of authors who lead, we appreciate you being here and we hope you subscribe. So you get this delivered to your device every week. And if you haven't left us a review, please do so. It really helps. And if you have a book in your heart, you've been wanting to write a book. Please go to authors who lead.com and join us on this journey of becoming a published author.

Leticia Ramos is an elementary school teacher who is passionate about working with students and creating extraordinary learning opportunities for students. With over 20 years of experience working in education, Lety has spent the last 10 years working with educational leaders in developing leadership training for children and teens.

Her new book The Core of Teaching talks about how everyone can create epic opportunities for not just learning, but to really empower people.

One of her newest TEACHER-preneur projects involves launching her new podcast, The Core of Teaching where she invites all leaders who feel called to share their stories about being inspired to teach and why teaching is SOULfullfilling. 

Leticia is committed to increasing student success and providing support to educators around the world in understanding who they are as teachers and why they love teaching. 

What We Discuss with Leticia Ramos :

  • Why she decided to write a book
  • Challenges during the writing process
  • Advice to aspiring writers
  • How do you know you’re ready to write a book?
  • A look into her book, The Core of Teaching
  • A message to teachers

[01:52] Why Lety Decided to Write a Book

The heart of a teacher is filled with so many things – smiles, giggles, comments, hugs, etc. The things you see in a classroom is just one thing, the things you see outside is another. But the things you hear from a student, it’s a whole new world. 

As educators, you’re constantly reminding students to live up to their potential to do their best to remember that no dream is ever too small to chase. 

It wasn’t until one of her students who, since she kept telling her students to always write and do better, asked her where’s her book?

[06:55] Challenges During the Writing Process

It’s making that commitment, and even taking those small action steps to get you ahead every single day. But Leticia was determined to do the absolute best every day. 

She kept a log and she would track the words she would write every day, even if it was written in a notebook. There’s just something tangible about having that in front of you and being able to hold it.

Leticia also had to practice the art of patience and had to untrain herself from the habits embedded in her. She developed a new writing style and new habits to develop this trait of becoming a published author.

[11:30] Advice to Aspiring Writers

Your words, can not only empower another individual, not only teach another individual, something new. But also, you can open yourself to an opportunity to create something huge in the world and impact not just one life, but many. 

We all have something very important to contribute to this world. 

What this world needs right now is to connect with leaders that are going to support our thinking, support our ability to do better in life, and connect with one another into something greater for this world.

Almost nobody will probably ever think they are ready. But it starts with one person. It’s about changing the lives of people – one life at a time, one teacher at a time. 

[14:22] A Look into Her Book, The Core of Teaching

The book explains the relationships Lety has developed along the way – as a teacher, and even as a student. She talked about all of those experiences in education that have really impacted her life. Those experiences have helped her become a different woman, a different teacher, a different wife, and a different individual in this world. 

Through teaching, she has been able to discover new things about herself and new abilities to teach from a different platform. She developed a passion for personal development, for educational leadership where she began to grow a business in that field. 

Her book talks about how there are so many individuals out in this world today that can be that amazing teacher and that can create epic opportunities for not just learning, but to really empower people.

[16:57] A Messenger to Teachers

Be patient with yourself and give yourself grace. If you’re constantly looking for new ways, to make your teaching practices better, then you’re doing the right thing. You have your whole heart in it. 

Don’t be afraid to ask for support. Just ride the wave and something good will come out of this. Try to look for the positive. If you can find one positive thing in your day, you’re going to feel a lot better about yourself.

There is something about a child that is a leader inside of them. 

Continue to remind students to move forward with that idea and put that idea into action and execute. So they can get closer to achieving the goal, overcoming their fears, and accomplishing their dreams.

Episode Resources:

Follow Leticia Ramos on Facebook and Instagram.

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