This week I learned quite a bit about myself. After sitting through four classes this semester, meeting my second semester freshman, and reading a lot this is what I have learned:
1) I’m only in grad school for myself and no one else. I’m not doing this to please my parents or anyone else for that matter. I’m here so I can be better at my craft.
2) I’m not competing with anyone but myself. It was really easy last semester to get caught up in the competition, especially since I’ve always been and still am outrageously comptetive. It’s easy to pick people who you want to be better than and work to be the best in the class, but in the end it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you work to your best potential and then try to be better than that.
3) Who cares if you haven’t read or done what everyone else has. Melissa commented on the “lagging behind” bit I wrote earlier in the week and she made a great point saying (I’m paraphrasing here), if everyone read the same stuff everyone would be writing the same stuff. That is absolutely valid and I think what everyone else does is their business. I’m taking classes where I haven’t read every author so I can broaden that horizon. So if people in my classes have read the stuff we’re reading for class good for them. I could care less.
4) Time management is a skill I need to improve on if I want to survive my four course load. I wrote a while ago about getting into a writing schedule and although I have sort of established one now that school has started I have noticed that I haven’t been writing enough fiction. It doesn’t help that I’m also teaching and reading a lot. Although, these sound like excuses, and yes maybe they are, I still need to figure out how I’m going to cram everything I want to do in one day in the time that I have when I’m not in class and teaching.
5) I’m not crazy for taking four courses this semester. I’m so sick of hearing people tell me I’m nuts. I’m not not nuts I’m aggressive and have a goal in mind that I am very determined to achieve. I’m aware that the program is not designed to be done in two years but I know people who have done it and they are still sane. If there is one thing I knew about myself before I started grad school it was that when I put my mind to something that’s it I’ve decided. So enough with the crazy talk.
I think that’s good for now. I’m sure I’ll learn a lot more about myself as the semester progresses but for one week I think I did all right.