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It's that Magical Time of the Year... Back to School!

It's that Magical Time of the Year... Back to School!

Tue Aug 30, 2016 at 12:00 PM

Back to school. It’s a magical time of year, one of my favorites. There are new stripes on the parking lot, new food choices coming to Pawley, new faculty members moving their academic lives into offices, new opportunities to learn and grow and connect and be.

It’s a good time to. . .

  1. Set goals. For each thing that you’re doing, what do you hope to get out of it? If it’s a class, what do you hope to learn? Who do you hope to meet? What do you expect to be able to do after that, that you couldn’t do before? For other facets of your life, most of your goals might be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-related). See https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/smart-goals.htm for more information.
    It’s also useful to have a few WIGs (Wildly Improbably Goals). In my life, WIGs have been long-term tools that I use to face in a useful direction. I might never end up where I thought I would, but by setting a Wildly Improbable Goal, I’m moving toward a better future. One of my current WIGs is to run a half marathon or full marathon every month for one hundred months (eight years, four months). So far, I’ve done thirty-six months. It keeps me healthy and gives me something concrete to head toward. See http://marthabeck.com/2002/09/wigs/
  2. Meet new people. When we were four years old, making new friends was much easier. Walking up to random strangers at the park and saying “Do you want to be my friend?” is less charming now that we’re adults than it was then. But back to school time gives you an opening to meet people you otherwise wouldn’t. Set a goal (see what I did there?) of meeting six new people and continuing a collegial relationship with two of them. If possible, seek out people who have a different outlook than you do; you’ll expand each other’s horizons.
  3. Be of service. You have a lot to offer, go ahead and offer it. As you develop new relationships and set goals, there will be opportunities to help others. Looking for and taking part in service opportunities increases your skills, exposes you to new people and settings, and is just plain good karma.

There’s nothing quite like this time of year. I hope that you enjoy it as much as I do. Best wishes for a successful and happy year. If you have a moment, please drop me a note or stop by the office; I’d love to hear about your goals and your plans.


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