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Mediocrity

Posted Jan 14 2009 8:53pm
I have never been one for mediocrity in the past but now I am trying to make peace with just that. My sister suggested that the key to contentment might be lowering one's standards as far as one can and still feeling ok about it. I suspect that this attitude might help my overall outlook on life. Although I have backed off on the number of things I am doing in general, I have still been getting most of my boost from my little achievements. Now I think I need to find my boost elsewhere.

Yesterday I got an evaluation from a Thursday walk through of my classroom. Things actually went well during the walk through and I expected some decent feedback but when I read my review, it was poorer than what I had hoped for. I really took it to heart. For nearly 24 hours I wracked my brain for how to do better. I was angry at myself for not doing more. I was also guilty that I don't even want to try making any major changes to my modus operandi at work. As I thought more about work, I did think of little ways to do things better but I also concluded that if what I am dishing out is mediocre, I must learn to accept this too. I know how many hours I put in after work and at home. I know how hard I have been trying to give the kids and my lessons the best of myself. I also know just how exhausting it is to get one kid to focus and take care of business, let alone 20. While I never want to be mediocre, I realize that I also need to be less hard on myself or I am going to drive myself nuts.

Sometimes it seems that my job is all-consuming. Even when I am not doing it, work is all I think about. I realize I really need to find balance, not work more or try harder. Perhaps if I can connect with what I really want, what gives me joy, what really makes life worthwhile, I can stop stressing so much about my job. I am tired of being angry at myself and of judging myself. I am tired of being tired all the time and feeling bad because when the day ends, all I really want is to sit at home and do nothing. I want to look forward to things again, not just make it through the day. I want to feel good about what I have done and not the things I have not done.

There is often great pleasure in a single moment but I am often too busy thinking about tomorrow to enjoy now. I want to learn to enjoy now again. I remember what it felt like to take a high dose of steroids. I dream of feeling more like that naturally. I felt so sharp, capable, focused and present. Things took as long as they took and I didn't worry about how I should be doing something else at any given moment. It can be a big challenge but that is how I want to feel. That feeling, of course, was not mediocre but I wonder if I could be mediocre and still find a way to feel like that.
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