Oh man, it’s been 3 whole days without a blog post and my fingers feel a little rusty. I’m currently laying on my bed feeling like I’ve gotten a little lazy with the posts and the challenges recently. However, this does have some justification and it doesn’t mean I’ve been lapsing in any other areas of productivity. If anything, my lack of posts is simply a product of putting the time into other places, rather than allowing it to go to waste. This afternoon I had my first teacher training observation, despite a whole week’s worth of stress and anxiety, it went incredibly well. The observer even compared my class to the “School Of Rock”, which I’m rather hoping makes it way into the observation notes.
The preparation for this, as well as other priorities, has meant that I haven’t been prioritising time for the blog. However, the observation is over and I can finally put some energy back to blabbing about life on the internet. Something that, for me, is as much of a therapy as it is an enjoyable hobby.
Earlier this week, in my stress heightened state, I was going to write a post about training on the job as a teacher and how, from what I’ve made out of it so far, the actual training courses for teacher’s don’t seem to contain a lot of applicable practice. Instead, the premise of the studies seem to be on theorists and behaviour. Which, whilst theories can be interesting, don’t seem to help in any classroom based situations in real life. Especially when your job role is to be Jack Black in the SEND version of the School of Rock. Anyway, having done my observation and it having gone well, I am now in a much more positive frame of mind towards the whole thing and have decided instead to write about expectations vs. reality again.
It’s a favourite subject of mine because I find it so applicable to modern life. In a world where were constantly subjected to other people’s “successes” and everywhere we turn we’re sold the idea of “rewards” for our “hard work”. Reality not fulfilling expectation is something that occurs on a daily basis.
Christmas is a prime example; we have this incredibly crescendo from mid-November right through to December, awaiting this supposedly incredible dynamic climax on the 25th. When in reality, the 25th soon comes around and most people wonder what the fuss was all about. Then in some desperate attempt to fulfil their expectations, they indulge far to heavily, often finding that it doesn’t bring them any of the joy they were hoping for. This then tends to lead to people feeling awful, guilty for all their indulgence, and then for the first 2 weeks of the year they go on crash diets, budget cuts and attempt to go to the gym every single day (despite no science based training programme suggesting that it’s a good idea).
The secret is, to enjoy every single moment in the moment. Take away the expectation, thats not to say you can’t be excited for things, but remember to enjoy what is happening in the right here and now and worry less about what is to come. This is something that I feel like I’ve predominantly cracked: I don’t favour days of the week, I don’t favour times of the year, I don’t fixate on many activities and I spend as many hours of my day filling them with activities I enjoy doing whilst doing them. Lucky for me I have a job that allows me to do this, I have a body built for function to fulfil all my athletic endeavours and I’ve worked hard on making sure I don’t fixate on silly things that I know won’t bring me the joy that I’m sold they will.
I think one area I do still have to remind myself of the expectations being better than the realities is ‘chill out’ time. I sometimes find myself watching mindless content on YouTube or looking at pointless images on instagram, in search of the feeling that constitutes ‘chilling out’. When in actual fact, what actually does chill me out is; writing blog posts, reading books, watching films with my girlfriend, listening to podcasts, making music, having deep and meaningful conversations, etc.
Note that when I say chill out, I mean physically as well as mentally, if I want to mentally chill out then I just crank out the miles on a nice long run. Which, this morning, I hit a lovely (almost) 9 miler along the river (photo below).
I guess I would want a reader to take from this the fact that, perhaps their expectation isn’t always going to match the reality of a situation. So just remember to check in with the present moment and see that the reality of being in the here and now is as good, if not better than, whatever that high you are expecting the future to bring. A “enjoying the journey over the destination” type sentiment.