“Become who you are by learning who you are.” Pindar
My whole life I've searched for who I am, thinking that life will guide me in that direction. For the most part that has been the case, but I feel like it has taken too long.
I went to college and thought basketball was going to get me the career I wanted. (18-23 years old)
I thought the connections I made through basketball would get me the career I wanted. (23-24 years old)
Went to graduate school with somewhat of an idea of what I wanted thinking that would be the answer and I would soon have the career I wanted. (24-25 years old)
Started waiting tables and working odd jobs enjoying my mid-twenties thinking that I would figure it out someday and everything was meant to be. (25-27 years old)
Quit the odd jobs because I started getting that feeling in my stomach that says "NO MORE!" So, I quit and hoped something would eventually happen. (27 years old)
Sort of Nope.
Got a call from a past coach I played for (basketball connection) and he was looking for an assistant men's basketball coach at the NCAA Division II level and I thought this was it. This was the beginning of my career! (27-29 years old)
Still sort of Nope.
That lasted two years, and I was out of a job! I moved back home with the parents. (29 years old)
I proctored a state test for my mom (elementary librarian) and I felt more at ease and more at home than any other place. So, I got certified to teach. (29 years old)
My first year I taught English-Language Arts to sixth and seventh graders. I also coached high school, middle school, and sixth-grade boy's basketball and slow-pitch softball. I had no idea what I was doing. (29 years old)
Sort of Yeah.
Long story. I got asked to resign as a boy's basketball coach, but stay as an assistant and teacher. I left. (29-30 years old)
I continued to teach middle school, and coach freshman at my old high school. (30-31 years old)
Stuck with it and got better. (30-31 years old)I moved to a new school and taught a tough inner-city group of 7th graders English-Language Arts. I also coached middle school football and basketball and stuck with it.
I kept getting better. (31-32 years old)
Then, I continued to add more duties to my teaching credentials. Department chair, more coaching, yearbook creator, team leader, etc... (32-38 years old)
Finally, I started feeling like I belong to something. I was a teacher, and I teach kids not only a subject but life lessons. I teach what I'm learning, and I learn things to teach them.
I hope they learn from my mistakes.
It's not perfect, and I am always looking for new things. I do know that sticking with things that get difficult ends up being worth it in the end. It's okay to quit, but at least try a few times until you start getting it, and if it just isn't working then maybe it's time to try something else, OR maybe it's time to keep plugging away but dialing it back to where it's manageable.
I will continue to figure me out. It's an ongoing battle, some days I feel like I'm conquering the world and other days I'm clueless and just want to curl up into a ball and sleep. Those are the moments I MUST push through the confusion, and keep pushing.
"If you allow yourself to learn who you really are by paying attention to that voice and force within you, then you can become what you were fated to become - an individual, a Master." Robert Greene
This post was inspired by the
book "Mastery" by Robert Greene (page 29)