Thursday, September 5, 2013

A Manifesto of Sorts.

I finished this summer not exactly pleased with myself. And although I wasn't unhappy, I wasn't over the moon happy either.

As this last week unfolded, I realized what it was. And what it always comes down to.

I'm only happy when I'm learning and progressing.

This summer I didn't make any goals. I worked. I came home and watched TV. Sometimes I would read books. Occasionally do yoga. My days fell into this constant 8:30-5:00 rhythm that felt an awful lot like a rut.

I barely wrote here.

I didn't engage myself in any dialogue. The creative juices didn't just not flow, they were completely absent.

But school started this week. And I can already feel it all coming back: the words, the lively debate, the contemplative hours, being so busy there's only time to eat in the five minutes before class, the term papers, the presentations.

I don't know that I'll ever be a good teacher. But sitting in my Intro to Women's Studies class today I knew that this is what I have to do. I have to be around people. I have to be exchanging ideas always. This world of academia; it's where I belong. It's where I'm happiest.

Last Sunday, before the semester started, (inspired by a few different blogs) I came up with a theme to make this last semester the best, to make it a semester without any regrets.

Try a little harder to be a little better.

The quote, said by the great Gordon B. Hinckley, has rolled around in my mind the past week, nesting, but making itself aware when my tendency to be lazy rears it's head.

What does it mean to try a little harder to be a little better?

For me this semester it means:

1) Try a little bit harder to love this imperfect body of mine. To treat it better, and be grateful rather than disdainful.
2) Try a little bit harder to be service orientated.
3)Try a little bit harder to make friends. If this is the semester of no regrets, then I will always say hi to everyone I know on campus, and stop hiding behind the lame excuse of, "They probably won't recognize my forgettable face, even if they did want me to say hi to them."
4) Try a little harder to be engaged in the scriptures. Sitting at a desk to study. Pencil in hand. No more comfy bed reading.
5) Try a little harder in school. I don't know that I can get better grades than I do. But this means speaking up in my Women's Studies classes, even if I don't think I'm as smart as the rest of the girls. And finding somewhere to submit my Adam and Eve paper.

So this is it. My Try a Little Harder Manifesto.

It's gonna be a good semester. I can feel it.

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