We have just reached the halfway point of our fall semester on campus. Students have completed their midterm exams; faculty are evaluating those exams and planning for the remainder of the semester. While it is a time of a lot of work, it is also a great time for reflection on the road traveled and the road ahead.
Below you will find an email I sent to all of my students earlier this morning. I did this last term as well. (If I do it again next semester, I guess I will be able to call it a tradition!) The advice below can be beneficial to all of us. We have busy lives; let’s take a moment and reflect on where we are and where we would like to be.
Here is my note to my students:
Good morning, Scholars.
Congratulations! You have reached the halfway point of the semester. You have completed eight weeks–and you have as many weeks left. You are, in reality, eight weeks closer to your dreams. As a favor to yourself, please do the following at this point as you get ready for the week ahead:
- Stop–find 5 or 10 minutes and get away by yourself. A quiet room; the campus library or cafeteria; your car; a quiet park; the beach; or even the bus….someplace that you do not have to talk with anyone else. Turn off your phone–or at least put it someplace where you will not hear or see it. This is just time for you.
- Reflect–consider your dream–the reason you say you are in college. Perhaps this dream is closer than ever–or maybe it feels further away than ever. Remember why the dream is important to you; why you want to do it/reach it. Has anything changed in your life that now causes you to look at the dream in a different manner?
- Evaluate–are you doing what you need to do to get to your dream? Are you letting other things or other people get in the way of your dreams? Are you making choices that are sabotaging your dreams? Are you satisfied with the progress you are making? What can you do to stay on track–or get back on track?
- Ask–3 questions of yourself:
- What should I STOP doing?
- What should I KEEP doing?
- What should I START doing?
- Mentor–find someone who can be of assistance; someone with the wisdom who can help you get closer to your dream. Perhaps YOU can, also, mentor someone who needs your wisdom.
- Commit–once you know what you want and need to do–DO IT!
You have traveled a long way this term. Do you want someone else or something else to determine where you will end up? Be proud of your efforts; be proud of your commitment; be proud of the work you will do in the weeks ahead. See the dream…your dream…and move toward it.
See you in class, scholars!
© Steve Piscitelli and Steve Piscitelli’s Blog, 2010.
What I do to get away from it all, is to set quietly by myself. I begin to refect on my dream, and I start thinking. I begin to figuring out my future, my dreams, and how to eliminate bad habits (that my precious time is wasted on). I do this every morning and every night before bed time prayer to the Lord. This is automatic thing that I do.
Reflection time is so important. It sounds lke you have figured that out! 🙂
After reading four other blogs (which all had valuable reasons behind what they said), I had to respond to this one because it helped me realize something. Mr. Piscitelli, your so much more than just my SLS teacher and I say this for all the students you have who actually listen to you. For example, just doing the steps this blog tells one to do can help one realize SO much about themselves as far as what they’re doing to get closer to their dream, what they’re doing that’s moving them away from it, and it also says to give ten minutes to oneself, which I think for some reason is the most valuable piece of advice in this blog.
when other people ask me, what i want to do in the future and i always told them i want to be a business woman. i just say and never make it become my dream or my goal. So i continue to waste my time on a lot of stupid thing. after i study in SLS1103 class i do figure out how to managed my time and try all my best to reach my goal, but I’m still don’t get the best result as i wish. it make me feel sad to continue.
Kyle, you make a valid point: giving reflection time to yourself is very important.
Making mistakes is not necessarily “sad.” While it is not a “happy” situation to make errors–it is a learning experience. If you learn from your mistake, you have the opportunity to move forward–closer to your dream!
Professor Piscitelli, I agree and take note on most everything you have taught us this year. However, I have found it difficult to apply this section. What if your goals change all the time? How can I decide between reality and ambition? It’s been tough for me to reflect and evaluate when I don’t know the direction I am going in.
Julia, that is a very good question. Lots of people I have worked with over the years have the same question. I couple of thoughts:
1. Do not give up on reflection; it helps to quiet the mind and clarify events and issues.
2. What excites you? What energizes you? What are you noted for? When you look around your world–what is it that you want to tackle?
3. Do you have a mentor who can help you sort things out?
4. Do you write your thoughts in a journal? Some people find that to be a very clarifying activity.
5. Read good (i.e., positive books about success; about your passions) books.
6. Give yourself time NOT to think about your direction. Give your mind a break. Sometimes clarity will come when we are not seraching for it.
I agree because its important to know whats important to you. You should ask your self why are you doing whay your doing? where is it going to take you? Piscitelli is always telling us about how we spend our time. And how our time is valueble to us. He also ask is what your doing right now getting you closer to your goal/dream.
Your time is valuable–and limited. Use it and invest it wisely.
I remember reading that email and thought it would be easy to apply these things to my life but it is always a process and may take me a little longer than others. When I first started taking this class I thought applying these things would be simple and I’ve heard these things before, but because I’m stuck in my ways I am still working on “The 3 questions I should ask myself.” Like I said it’s a process but I’m working on it.
Yes, it is a process–and most of us (all of us?) are a work in progress. Keep the questions in front of you and keep moving forward.
We are always modeling…for someone.
I strongly feel we are all reflections of our parents or who raised us. We neither want the same, want more, or dont want the life as who raised us. We have to becareful of the empath we make on ppl cause can can change their lifes. We all reflect on each other at a times are two. You may see a life style u want and it will change ur goals now ur a reflection of a stranger. As ppl we should live out our dreams but as americans we should reflect good things good behavior cause u never know whos watching…..our kids?