How did I get here?
Good question. Long answer, but good question.
Time is everything. I’ll keep this short.
We all struggle with how and what to pursue. I’ve sought many different things in life, experiencing failure and success—both vital to any process.
I made the conscious decision to listen to all feedback, direct, indirect, and from strangers to acquaintances. I decided to listen to what other people had to say about me.
Analyzing how my encounters go
I’m highly self-aware, to a fault, honestly. While I can’t please everyone, nor is it something I aspire to do. Those who don’t find me particularly “pleasing” allow me to dial in on specific traits I may be putting on display.
For example, I meet a buddy for dinner, and he’s with a couple I’ve never met, but it’s cool. I order a beer, and everyone else is having wine.
Then I’m asked, “So Chris, how long have you known Ian?”
“He said he wanted to appear more diverse, so a couple weeks now.”
My responses elicit many reactions. I’ve heard and seen my fair share because I say things like this often. Why do I do this, you ask? I have my theories.
We often downplay our experiences
specifically when encountering people we don’t know, especially when it doesn’t go well—better known as “I’m not having my way.” I handled it the same way until I knew better. Always put it on the other party. It’s them, not me.
I had to give it time, gain some experience. How much time and how much experience is required? It depends, but if you take the time, and you’re not a total narcissist. You’ll begin to understand that maybe some of these reactions are directly caused by you.
It’s precisely the encounters that don’t go as we’d hope that should be receiving our attention. These are the moments where you can learn a lot about yourself by considering the way people perceive you. We can walk away from situations all day, claiming that it’s someone else. Maybe it is, sometimes. Not all the time.
Establishing personal accountability and maintaining it is another story altogether.
How did I get here
I listened to those people, all of them. They weren’t the only ones I heard. Plenty of prayer, as it all starts with my identity. Then the most obvious of them all.
I’m doing what I’m good at.
Did he just say that he’s good at writing?
Yes, yes I did. Relax, let me explain.
I’m a student studying English with an emphasis on writing. Why, because while I did not put even 75% effort into MY old approach towards MY education. When it comes to the English Department, I’ve received grades that have far exceeded my mediocre attempts. Some call that a sign.
I had to ask myself, how is this happening? Why is this happening? Something must be there. Essays don’t bother me; science does. Reading multiple books a semester interests me; mathematics does not (I’ll get to the great state of Virginia later).
When pursuing higher education, subjects ultimately increase in difficulty.
What would it look like if I put real effort into pursuing writing? Good question, let’s find out.