Staying Grounded

Week 55 – April 5, 2021 – Focus on my strengths

One of my pet peeves about blogging is not to repeat blog titles. I do it from time and again then feel compelled to change it because I made these arbitrary rules in my head. I’ve written many blogs and you can tell first hand if I repeated a blog title. It says it right in the URL… blah, blah, blah-2. Admittedly, nothing is more frustrating, but I am not going to do anything about it and let it be. Although having two of the same titles aggravates me to no end, is this the hill I’m going to die on? Not today.

I just finished something for work that sucked the life out of me. No joy. No love. It was awful. I’m not saying that it was not a necessary good, but it was something that I had to do as part of my work and honestly, it was not fun. I put it off for a few weeks to see how the situation would evolve and now was the best time to write that report. I have soooooo much on my plate, each demanding my time, but I have to proceed with one step at a time. I am totally mono-tasker. That’s it. I’ve got to be me.

That’s been “my struggle” lately… and I do not believe struggles are a bad thing. I think that’s where the learning lies, it’s within the struggle. I’ve been taking the time to learn more about myself. Being in COVID-times one can’t help but reflect on what’s important and why. I’ve been a big fan of Myers-Briggs since doing my master’s degree eons ago. I fluctuate between ESTJ and ENTP. It depends on what I am doing and where my headspace is. Recently, my friend introduced me to Enneagram. It turns out that I am Enneagram 8. Strangely, what I’ve read so far is pretty close.

Learning more about myself gives me some kind of solace. I am on this journey of self-study and would like to hone this skill as I move forward with teaching and research. I am so interested in identity development and learning more about how my identity was developed. I wrote a Location Statement in preparation for a presentation I was doing with a teacher candidate at BCTEN (BC Teacher Education Network) Virtual Conference. I am currently working on a Location Statement in Education. I hope to post that soon. In the meantime, I engaged in one more survey.

I jumped in, spent the money, and delved into a survey questionnaire to learn about my strengths. We talk about “strength based learning” in teacher education, but how can you do that if you don’t know your strengths. I’ve done this survey several times before, but I wanted to do the full analysis as well as see if anything has changed for me or not. As it turns out, most of my strengths have remained the same but now I am making connections to my current context. What I have learned is, I have been resisting or denying my strengths. I would step forward, be spooked by no one else seeing or feeling the same way, and then would step back. Why did I do this?

I reflect on my Location Statement and social dynamics of my family. What I learned as a child is to step back, because I did see things differently. So, I just assumed I was wrong. In my family, being the youngest child, I had no say or authority. Apparently, this is my strength, amongst may other things that are true. HUH? What I did act without consultation, I would often look back with regret and huge self-doubt because of the same reasons. I must be wrong!!! It turns out, it’s my strength and I should embrace it. My mom was trying to teach that to me, even on her last days on this earth. She could see me and my strengths. That was a hard lesson to learn.

This week was challenging, which left me in two places…. heartbroken and heart-warmed. Now that I understand more about myself and understanding why I am behaving in response to certain situations helps me to realize that I am operating from my values, that I can see things differently from others, and I am driven to influence others. I have purpose and I know my why. What I do and how I do it is ALIGNED to who I am. I just have to trust myself. This is my strength and my job is not to step back. My self-doubt is not real. It’s my strength and I have to honour that.

I looked back at my last blog titled, “Staying Grounded” and I was in a different place 2-years ago. You can hear my self doubt and uncertainty. I still talked about being a “uni-tasker” and being completely flooded with work. I was also talking about Prince George not being my PLACE and that I had no intentions of leaving the Sunshine Coast. It’s amazing how things have changed in 24-months. I’ve been back on the Sunshine Coast since Mother’s Day 2020 due to the pandemic. I’ve been teaching remotely and enjoying being back on the Coast with my daughter, but my marriage ended and I am 100% thinking about leaving and starting anew. It’s time for change.