Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Self Awareness 1

Our Program Director asked us to reflect on the following question, I thought I'd share my reflection.

What I have I learned about myself and what new awareness do I have about who I am and how I exist in the context of the intensity of a group experience?

Much of my self-discovery and awareness happened during the retreat at Gibran’s house, and to avoid being redundant, I will refer whomever reads this to that blog entry. 
To expound on my value of relationships, it has carried into my strengths. Many of my colleagues have remarked on my “power” of networking. I know I have always been good at meeting new people, but had never really thought of it as a “skill” since it seems quite basic to me. Yet, these past few weeks have revealed my Montessori upbringing and my willingness and ability to take risks. In Montessori schools, there are no educational limits, you continue onto the next workbook, when you finish the level on which you are working, and I was on a first name basis with all my teachers, despite the 30-50 age difference of years between us.  Having teachers as friends from such an early age imparted me with an intrepid, ambitious drive to approach anyone. My travels and majorly staying with people I had not met yet have only affirmed Albert’s adage of “Strangers are friends you haven’t met yet.”  All people are just that. People. And I’ve been told countless times people like nothing better than to ask them for their advice. Another skill the Montessori environment instilled in me was my inquisitive nature. As a result this coupled with my intrepid willingness to approach anyone is (IMHO) what makes me such a strong networker, not only for myself, but for the Sistema fellows group. 
I am neither an adrenaline nor thrill seeker in the least, but I’m not afraid to do things that involve unknowns, in fact I thrive on that because that unknown is the conduit for the excitement that usually is generated (described in the former paragraph). It is in this dynamic and mobile environment of having lived in 7+ places since graduation two years ago, that I have become so adaptable and malleable. Yet, it has only been in the presence of others, that I realize now to what extent. 

I’ve also realized, only after Monique posed it in her presentation last week, the emotion I feel most often is excitement. I’ve always known I am an extraordinarily enthusiastic person, but never that excitement is the feeling of which I live. It explains why I have been coined a “lifeaholic” (of which I am by NO means ashamed!), it explains why I have been so nomadic, and my strong reluctance to complacency and, at this point in my life, settling down. It also explains my drive and ambition (and how I co-founded a Sistema nucleo with no prior knowledge).
I am currently grappling with learning to match “the level of hunger” others have without dimming the satiation of my own appetite. A goal of mine is certainly not to reduce that energy (My mantra is I am a sunny tree, full of enthusiasm and passion), but rather utilize that energy in a way that is beneficial and not overwhelming to others. It is the reason my voice becomes approachable rather than credible, why my speeches sometimes go at a presto speed, and why I may clutter your inbox. I am excited about something and want to share it with you or I’m fascinated with what you’re talking about and am expressing my interest by bombarding you with questions. I strive to be able to convey this excitement in a palpable, but not overwhelming way.

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