So I did my ten days of actively practicing gratitude, and I’m glad that I did. Transitions are weird, but with the right mindset, anything is conquerable.
I’ve teetered back and forth on whether or not to write personal things on this blog, as it started as a blog only about teaching. I’ve gotten some feedback, both positive and negative, regarding the personal nature of some of my posts, and at times, it makes me wonder if I should be combining my personal thoughts with my professional ones. But for me, it feels right to combine them. Teachers are not compartmentalized beings; we don’t leave our jobs at work. Instead, all the parts of us are fused together, and that is the package that we deliver to our students every day. Actively practicing gratitude–or actively confronting any sorts of emotions–makes me a better person, and in turn, a better teacher. I find presence while writing. I find a “flow”–one that I do not want to give up and one that I want to pass along to my students.
(1) I’m grateful for vulnerability. Through this blog, I’ve let myself be seen, and by letting myself be seen, I’ve learned way more about myself and who I want to be. Sometimes, it isn’t pretty, and sometimes it’s awesome. But because I’ve learned how to practice that vulnerability–because I know exactly what it feels like before, during, and after–I’ll be able to nurture that in my students when I see it unraveling before my eyes.
(2) I’m grateful for process. Process is hard to identify, as even within a process, you are completing these microproducts day in and day out. It makes it hard to balance between focusing on the goal and focusing on the process of completion and the process of learning. Sometimes, though, during the process, we feel lost, we’re not sure what we’re doing, and so we gravitate toward what “feels right.” I’m not sure where else this blog, this journey in California, or some other journeys I’m embarking upon are going to take me. So I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing, and I’ll invest reason in this process later. Can’t wait to do it, too.
(3) I’m grateful for possibility. Because within a process, there lies great possibility. Chicago felt completed to me. It felt like a “product,” if you will, and it left me, in some ways, barren of possibility. But here, I feel like the world is at my fingertips, which is both exciting and terrifying. It feels like it could slip away or be firmly within my grasp at any moment.
But it’s what’s going to make me the best version of me yet.