I find I reflect more and more each day. Some would say, “what a waste of time”. However, I find it gives me a chance to see what I have learned over the years and relive the good times in my life. I don’t live in the past, but I do appreciate that time which the Lord has given me.
Reflection is important because it not only lets us learn from our mistakes, but remember the many good times we have enjoyed. When I reflect upon my career path, I know I could of gotten to where I wanted to go faster with just a little guidance. There was none through the counselors at the high school I went to. They were already overwhelmed with all they had to do with so many students. In some ways the choice I made to go to Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC was a great decision. At that time I loved everything about the big city and fashion. What I was to learn later was that I didn’t like working weekends and nights, especially during Christmas time.
Chapter two is marriage and three daughters and many moves with my husband in the military. I decided to go back to get my BA because I found out that you get paid very little without it and you have limited job opportunities. Once again I needed guidance in what to major in, but I just jumped right in and picked Human Resource Management because I could think of no one to ask. I remember thinking that this field dealt with people and I loved doing that. As it turned out, I never used that degree in that field other than to obtain a job I loved. I was the Self Sufficiency Coordinator at a community college . I taught women from a Domestic Violence Center, young unwed mothers and female welfare recipients life and career goals and also prepared them for their GED. I really loved that job and hated to leave it when we moved. One thing I did realize is that I needed a Masters in Counseling so I could answer the questions that often were asked me by these women. I felt totally unprepared to deal with some of their issues.
Reflecting back I know that was a turning point in my life. When we moved I got a job working with welfare recipients in helping them find volunteer work and look for a job. This was Florida law that they needed to spend 30 hours doing volunteer work every week and show me five job searches when we met each week. No, I didn’t like that job, but knew I learned from it and was well prepared for it with my previous position. While I was working, I also was working on my master’s degree at night. I also worked at a school/home/counseling center for young unwed mother’s. I finished my masters degree in counseling during this period. History repeats itself again with me working in a field I was already familiar with.
Lesson learned there was, don’t stay in a job you don’t like. Life is too short to waste time doing something that makes you miserable. Reflecting I can see I learned another lesson along the way. During this time I applied for a job with a community college as a counselor. I absolutely loved this position and often found my self mentoring the non traditional student returning to school. Who better to understand their struggles than me who had done the same thing. While I was there you might say I got talked in to getting a Ph.D. I had never even dreamed of doing this but my mentor from my Master’s Program kept telling me I needed to do this. I can say without a doubt it was the hardest thing I ever did. Especially when we moved after I had completed my classes and had only one year of my dissertation down. I found doing this from a distance was really difficult. However, I persevered because at that time my ninety year old Mother wanted to come to my graduation and she did.
When we moved to Virginia, I found myself teaching various psychology classes and student success at a community college I can’t say I enjoyed that either, though I did it for five years. I guess you might say kids are different from the time I went to school. Respect, pride in your work weren’t always present. When I heard about coaching, I knew this is what I wanted to do so I returned to school to prepare myself. I thoroughly enjoy it and feel I make a difference in the lives of my clients.
As I reflect back, I know every twist and turn of my journey was meant to be. I learned many valuable lessons and learned many different skills. I can say now that I am happy with my journey. It may not of gone as I thought it would, but it went the way it was suppose to and I arrived where I should be.
Therefore, reflection is not a bad thing. It is a good thing in my mind and one more people should practice. Ask yourself, do I reflect upon my journey. Do I need help with plotting it out or changing it. If so, do it now and don’t waste another day of your life. As we often hear, life is to short to waste it being unhappy.