Friday, July 10, 2009


This is pure and simple procrastination. In the face of an overwhelming task of building a curriculum from scratch, I'm finding myself mentally shutting down. I'm one week into a new career and finding myself already doubting my qualifications for the task. It really is not a matter of success or failure, as, in my mind, failure is not an option. But I am not approaching this career with a natural talent, or even disposition, for the work. I'm a friggin' introvert. With that said, as I continue attempting to put a proverbial square peg in a round hole, I realize that my personal approach to my job cannot affect my obligation to teach my students something of value. I see every one of them and their apathy, their angst, their brokenness, and wonder how, in God's name, I am ever going to make an impact. I'm also keenly aware that I really don't understand this profession yet. My goal has nothing to do with my obligation in a "standards" sense. I want them to think, not pass a test. But they don't think. They process and perform routines based on their programming. The values of our society have every one of us trained to respond to information in a certain way. Media has made us desensitized and passive thinkers. There is a groupthink even I seem to be breaking under, and I am. I gave into it probably in sixth grade, when I decided to follow the straight and narrow path to... success. Right. I worked hard, got a job when I turned 16, and haven't taken a breath since. In the mean time, the world shrank to the size of a paycheck.
I keep waiting for the thing to stop spinning. It reminds me of Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged. John Galt created this machine that can actually stop the world from spinning. Well, it's a perpetual motion motor actually. In the book the "powers that be" were screwing things up in such a fashion that the only way to salvage was to basically let the resources die and cultivate the land from scratch. I almost feel like what I need is a memory dump in the same way, like reformatting a computer drive.
Everything nowadays seems like such a chore. To me, this means I'm not approaching things correctly. Instead of being excited about the job, I'm overwhelmed and very resistant. I can't get organized because I'm too busy looking at the entire mountain. I've suddenly exposed the fact that although I have a goal and desired outcome, I, even personally, have no clue how to reach them. How do I teach others how to think when I'm shutting down like this? I'm just as susceptible to the habit of wanting to do anything else but the task at hand (as is demonstrated by this blog).
I guess there's nothing more to do in the mean time than to do my best and try to involve some faith in the situation. Faith seems to be a critical element that has been lacking for far too long, but I don't suppose I have time to delve into that topic. There is work to do.

Originally posted Monday, August 4, 2008

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