Happy New Year! I trust that you had a holiday that was full of family, friends and food. I know that mine was. As I began to think about my resolution for 2013, I started to think of all the things I have learned and the ways that I have changed in 2012. Thank you to everyone who made my year what it was. Thanks for being motivating, encouraging inspiring and passionate, you have made me want to be those things too. So, cheers to you!
1) The difference between happiness and joy.
Simply put, happiness is an emotion, joy is a decision. For me, happiness is rooted in the things I like, the things I do and the things I want. It does not take a mathematician to realize that the common denominator here is the word “things”. Because things can come, go and change, I believe that our happiness can be a roller coaster ride based on our current emotions towards our stuff, circumstances or the affect of other people around us. Sometimes I find myself being pushed into ups and downs by these outside influences, and letting my circumstances control how I felt. I have learned that the definition of joy is an inner peace that allows us to be content, no matter the situation. I have to make a concious decision that I need to be content in any situation, because in almost all situations, my attitude is the only thing I can change. Learning how to be joyful, and not just happy, has changed the way that I approach life, and I love it so far.
2) To let go of the things that are beyond my control.
I love to analyse. I am most often two steps ahead of the people around me because I have analysed the situation to death. This makes me, what some people would call a “control freak”. I would argue that I am not being a control freak, but that I have already worked out the best outcome in my head, so we should just do things that way! Kidding aside, this year I have begun to really mellow out and I hope to continue to mellow out. I have learned to let go of things that I can’t control and no one has died yet, so I think I will keep on trying this!
3) People want me to be good at my job.
I have learned that there is a world full of interconnected people who I have never met in person that care about my success as an educator. Twitter has changed the ways that think about teaching and learning. Ideas and strategies that I am not being taught at the university level are being taught to me through this social network. I appreciate the people in my personal learning network that are so encouraging to me. They are eager to share ideas, lesson plans and personal victories. It is those simple tweets that make me want to be the best teacher I can. If you are someone who has shared with me in my journey to become a teacher, I thank you again, I would be very different teacher intern this coming year without you.
I had a much more extensive list when I began to write this post, but as I began to write, it boiled down to these three things. I also have noticed how even though I have separated them into three categories, that they can easily be blended together. Choosing to be joyful has taught me to mellow out and learn when things are out of my control. I have learned to start mellowing out because of the people in my personal learning network who are very willing to help me, so I don’t have to be so worried about my future. In 2013 I will be doing two internships. In eight weeks I will start a three week term and in eight months, I will start a four month term. I am excited to continue to learn with you.
I’ll keep you posted!