This year I wanted to start off where I ended, instead of grade 11 being a new chapter, it would rather be a continuation of where I left it last. As I grow up, and transition from being a kid more responsibility falls on my shoulders and I begin to do things for myself. Everything that I do now is my choice, there is no one holding my hand or walking by my side, obviously my parents, teachers, and peers will have their own thoughts and suggestions, but now it’s up to me to make the things I want to happen, happen. This year I’ve gone in with this mindset, and to tell the truth, it’s done nothing but good to me. I know it may not seem like it, but having this so called β€œpressure” is what’s pushing me to the next level.Β 

I have high standards for myself and that will never change about me, I’ve been raised in a way that doesn’t let me take the easy option, and I’ve got no one to thank but my parents. To me it’s evident that these standards are the most present within my learning and I don’t really know why, it may be because I feel I have something to prove, but that doesn’t define why school in particular brings this out of me. I care a lot about what other people think of me, and that’s one of my many flaws, but at the same time this has proven to benefit me in a way that keeps me determined for improvement. Although this trait has its benefit, in the bigger picture it does more harm than good and I’m trying to remove this so it’s not other people defining my success. Throughout this process, I’ve began to take a new look on my learning, the final product has always been what’s motivated me and I’ve finally realized why, because that’s what people see, but as of late I’ve shifted to focusing on the journey rather than the destination.

Both the projects that we have completed this year I have gone in with this mindset, and to be completely honest, it’s made my learning more enjoyable. What I’ve realized is that in past years I have been so focused on what my end product will look like, I don’t put maximum effort in to the little things along the way, because I think they won’t help me in the end.Β 

Last year in my tPOL, I talked a lot about the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People and how it had a large impact on my growth as a learner and person in general, and don’t get me wrong, I still try to live by these, but habit two in particular is one that I can’t say I agree with anymore. Begin with the end in mind is what habit two states, but as I hear more things from different people, I can shape my own opinions and thoughts. Soccer is a big part of my life and it shows in my learning, I manage to relate what I’m thinking to soccer, it’s just how my brain works. Recently, my coach said something that really stuck with me,

β€œfocus on what’s now, if you do everything properly and what you need to do to succeed now, whatever comes later will just be a product of that work.”

Although he said this in soccer context, I kept on thinking how I can bring this into a school environment, and I believe I have done exactly that. This thought has pushed me to do deeper work with more meaning, and just overall improved what I do, inside and outside of school doors. Of course it’s still important to have some sort of idea of what the end product will look like, and I’m not saying I don’t anymore, but figuring out later allows me to make more connections and produce something that I genuinely care about and want to create.Β 

A Journey Of My Growth

Another one of my goals from last year was to be myself, add character into my work and have a style that when you see or hear it, you know it was me. With the two and a half projects I’ve done so far, I’m proud of how I’ve pushed myself to carry on with this goal, and not just think of it, but actually act on it, and I don’t want to sound arrogant, but I believe I’ve acted on it well. Manhattan Project Project, Macbeth, and The Cold War are all topics that at face value I don’t think I enjoy, but after I put the early work in to understand each idea, I found aspects for me to dive deeper into, which in the end resulted in a win-win situation. I want to highlight the Macbeth project in particular, you both know me very well so you can probably imagine how I felt when I was tasked with reading and then preforming what I read, and I’m not going to lie, I had a fixed idea that I was going to strongly dislike this project. I don’t use the word hate for a reason and that being because I’m reflecting, knowing what happened and the word hate isn’t appropriate for my feelings. Through focusing on the journey I was able to dive deep into the little things, like when we were discussing themes there was one that I kept on going back to and I even did some research on it. By the time I got to the end I had create a script that I thought met my standards, and mainly I connected it back to something I’m passionate about, soccer. My best work comes from when I truly care about what I’m doing and I managed to do that. Although the final performance didn’t go to plan, I’m okay with that as it was all part of the journey.Β 

Modernizing Macbeth

So far this year I’ve seen a lot of growth, in both my quality of work, but also my character. As I said, I have high standards so I know I can be so much better, I’m far from my past self but far from my best self. As I said at the beginning, I want this year to be a continuation of the last, so my goal is still to complete work that I am genuinely proud of, and I can proudly say I am on track to do that.Β