As many of you know, I have been teaching at a university in Taiwan for the past four years. During each of the past three summers, I have traveled home to the U.S., and I always have mixed feelings about leaving family and friends to return to Taiwan. This past summer, that all changed.
One day in August, I woke up to the realization that I was actually excited about my return trip.Even though I knew I would face the same workload and stressors I had left behind in June, I felt more hopeful than I’d felt in years. Without a doubt, this was a powerful moment for me. I didn’t need to look far to find an explanation for this dramatic shift. During an extended visit with my friend Joycelyn, I had a chance to more fully explore the materials she was developing for her course, Farther to Go. In the process, I gained several insights that changed the way I looked at my life and at the world around me.
It’s hard to pinpoint the strongest idea or tool of the course. Certainly, being more aware of how the brain really works has been life altering for me, but that’s only the beginning. The tools that help focus that awareness into intentions have held real power. I feel like I can reinvent my life, bit by bit; and those bits are gaining momentum. I’ve already changed long-established habits, and the results are allowing me to move in the direction of what I really want to be doing.
For me, the most important aspect of my work with Farther to Go is that I finally am finding out what it actually is I want to be doing. Until recently, it was hard to imagine what a life of my own would look like. Now I can envision all kinds of possibilities, while trying things out to see if they really fit. I am becoming wide awake to the world around me and more alive than I’ve been in a long time.
Stay tuned as I share notes on the reinvention of my life.