Before Diving Back In

Young minds fill the four walls of your classroom, your online meeting room, or your conquered section of a public space. You mentally run through your lesson plan, your contingency plan, and your contingency plan for your contingency plan for the 50th time. The sleepy vibe of the students threatens to swallow you up asContinue reading “Before Diving Back In”

A Precedent Has Already Been Set

The sun is setting on my 20’s and this Sunday I will enter my 30’s. It’s easy to slip into the mindset of not being far enough along for my age, especially when there’s post after post about “the youngest person to ever [insert achievement here]” or “the top people under [insert decade here]”. I’veContinue reading “A Precedent Has Already Been Set”

The Right to Your Own Process

“I’m calling them guidelines because if I say ‘rules’, you might have the expectation that it will be true every time. As you know, there are many exceptions in English,” I remember telling my students. After a Sunday morning conversation with my life coach, I realized that this could be applied to my writing careerContinue reading “The Right to Your Own Process”

A loss is not a waste of time

Next month, I will be taking the N2 level of the Japanese Language Placement Test (JLPT). My renewed interest in Japanese prompted me to sign up a couple months ago. I certainly understand more now than I did during my disastrous attempt 2.5 years ago, during which I was woefully unprepared. Still, I don’t feelContinue reading “A loss is not a waste of time”

There’s always something new to see

I’ve lived in the same suburban town here in Japan for over 3 years. So, I don’t believe it’s an exaggeration to say that I’ve been in and out of its main train station hundreds of times. Yesterday, I went for an evening walk and short stop in the supermarket. When I was heading backContinue reading “There’s always something new to see”

Consider your own impact

“You seem to have it all together.” I’ve been told some version of this by several coworkers. Yet instead of that, my mind is often occupied with comparisons to the other teachers around me and how I *feel* I fall short to them. What I assume are their perceptions of me are actually self-criticisms inContinue reading “Consider your own impact”

How much do you want it?

I had an opportunity to apply for a one-week program in Japan organized by my high school, but I allowed fear to get in the way of me going for it. Five years later, as a college junior, I came across a summer study abroad opportunity in Japan. I was aware of other opportunities, butContinue reading “How much do you want it?”

Why just accept it?

During my first year as an undergraduate, I was determined to get as many general education requirements out of the way as possible. One of those requirements was in the wellness category. I had not done much yoga by that point, but a class in which I would do stretching and breath work rather thanContinue reading “Why just accept it?”