Final entry on Getting started on skills development and the Warwick Skills Portfolio
Workshop Tutor: Amanda Randall
Definitely, we never know what life has in store for us…
I find myself writing today with a bright red cast on my leg. After falling during a session of bouldering a week ago, I broke my fibula and had to have my leg immobilized. And just like that, this has proven to be the hardest week since I arrived here in the UK.
On the one hand you have the pain and discomfort that comes with a broken leg, as well as the fact that you have to learn how to do everything differently. An on the other hand you have the emotional challenge it supposes to be alone on the other side of the world and having all of your plans fall apart. I wake up every morning feeling strangely like the prisoner in cartoons who has this enormous metal ball chained to his leg to prevent him from going anywhere.
As a result of this situation a lot of my plans and careful organization fell apart: for instance I will not be able to travel for the holidays with my friends and I had to ask for an extension for my assignments. However looking back at it I can say I feel proud of myself by the way I managed it. As I am writing this reflection now I can see that even though we cannot control everything that happens in our lives, we can definitely control the way we face it and what we decide to do with whatever life throws at us. And yet again I found myself in a perfect situation for self-reflection and learning.
Out of this situation I learned the importance of prioritizing and analyzing in a calm way stressful situations so you can make good decisions. In this case, the most important thing was my health and even though I was inclined to stress about deadlines and work, I knew I had to take this time to relax to be able to cope with the pain and discomforts in the best way possible. I was also glad to see that the time invested on building a good network of friends here in Coventry was of great importance in a moment like this one. You definitely need a support group and people around you to help you cope. But also this made me work really hard on my ability to delegate and ask for help, which is not my strong suite.
However the most important lesson in this process is about strength and drive. I know myself and I know in situations like this one I tend to get overwhelmed and give up. None of this happened this time, and I think it has a lot to do with the fact that the self reflection process has made me more aware of my personality, and has given me the tools I needed to see things in a more rational way. Plus I can see very clearly the goals I have ahead of me and that I want to achieve as well as the plan to get there; which means, even though there will certainly be obstacles in the way, I can tackle them and continue on my path to get to where I want to be.
So I take this specific experience to highlight the way this workshop has changed my approach to life. My action points are not specified through the description, but they are in the underline structure of this reflection. For instance I would not have been able to cope with this situation with out applying what I had learned about time management and prioritizing in the P7 workshop. The reflective writing process helped me in facing the situation and my way to handle it in a calmed relaxed way. And finally, all in all it would be harder to get along with if I did not have clear set goals for my career plan, as I know no matter how hard the process is, I have something to look forward and that motivates me to keep going forward.
I cannot wait for what the next workshops will teach me and how they will help me grow and become a better person. I look forward to continuing with the Warwick Skills Portfolio Award during the next term, as I have seen the advantages it can bring for personal and professional growth.