Monday, October 15, 2012


I ask my students to set goals. I help them form measurable, realistic, and timely goals for themselves.

One would think it would be easy to set some for myself; however, upon being asked to give 2 for the year, I came up blank... and have continued to do so for the last week. Why is the simplistic sounding question, "What do you want to learn and/or accomplish this year?" as difficult for me to answer as "What do you want?"

Initially, I thought perhaps it was because I hadn't figured out what I wanted to be when I grew up, but then I eventually came to the conclusion it's partially because I've invested so much of my time focusing on helping others, I've forgotten to give myself a little attention. The other, possibly bigger, part of the story is that a lot of my life has been spent just trying to get through the day I'm in; I'm not used to stepping back and thinking in terms of the long(ish) distance future.

But here I am at 28 years old learning that maybe, just maybe, my life will extend beyond the day, week, month, and even year I'm in. It's time to learn it's ok to dream and plan for the future- even if those dreams and plans change a billion times as my life progresses.

Goals are important. They give milestones to reach for, and a framework for future endeavors. They make the abstract more tangible, and assist in propelling momentum towards accomplishment of even bigger goals.

So in these quiet hours, I'm asking myself, "What do you want to learn and accomplish this year?"

  1. I will continue writing in a way that is productive, integrative, and introspective (possibly even published outside of my own blog)- at least 4 journal/blog entries a month until the fellowship year ends.
  2. I will learn to communicate more effectively through daily interactions with staff and students, weekly check-ins with my supervisors, and weekly meetings with  my housemates. 

Nothing particularly profound, but baby steps towards answering the broader more difficult question of, "What do you want?"

For now, I don't quite have an answer to that question, but perhaps I will by the end of the year.

To be continued...

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