Spring has finally sprung and I know I am not the only one saying “FINALLY!” I can happily wear my sun dresses and flip flops. The cold weather just makes me feel extremely drab, and I have no motivation to put any effort into what I am wearing, or even my school work (sometimes). The warm weather has given me a boost of energy and happiness. With Spring here I feel like I just want to get outside and just walk. The warm weather lately has made me an extremely happy camper!
I have always loved performing, and I guess I am decent at it as I did receive a scholarship for performing for my undergrad and I do want to be a theatre teacher. But, if this is my passion, then why haven’t I done it more?
It’s so easy for us to get caught up in work, obligations to our families, sick kids or pets; your car needs to be fixed, and so on. I allowed myself to get caught up in this for the past 5 years. Yes, I have done about one show a year but this is a big change from what I used to commit to. I allowed myself to get caught up in work and I thought this was being successful. I was making money, I was working full time at only 23, and hey, I was able to live on my own and take care of my doggie. That’s success right? But I wasn’t happy. Yes, I had good days, but it wasn’t that magical, happy to go into work every day, type of thing. It was, oh I go into work, don’t really care if I am late or not, and something positive might happen type of thing. That isn’t happiness. I gave up performing as I used to so I could dedicate myself to my job, and with taking night classes, I just didn’t have time. I think I rationalized it by having those night classes which were going towards my dream of teaching.
Now that I am almost done with my degree, and I had to quit my job in order to do my Student Teaching course, I have so much free time. That could be why I am back to doing two shows at a time. I am nervous because my routine of working daily is gone, but I am back to being happy. I have such a great time at rehearsals; it’s amazing I ever let myself not do this!
However, no matter how much fun I have performing, nothing can ever compare to the joy I had teaching! My mom brought up in the car the other day, “What happens if you get a teaching job and its not what you thought it would be?” I immediately was shocked! How could she even think this? I have never felt so filled with purpose, so complete as when I was in the classroom. It was like that Harry Potter wand moment! I didn’t choose teaching, it chose me! Now that I am job searching again, my parents keep suggesting full time jobs that, yes, I am qualified for, but they aren’t in a classroom. I can never go back to doing anything but teaching. I don’t know how people go through their lives doing something they don’t like!
So here is my last piece of advice to you who are here at Fontbonne beginning your lives! Chose something great, chose something that makes you happy and do it! Now, that doesn’t mean if you enjoy playing baseball or volleyball, painting, or pottery, acting or reading, still do that too! Make choices for yourself! I have always found myself to be a selfless person, but this is the time to be selfish. This is the time to choose your career, to choose your destiny and enjoy it!
What would put a big smile on your face? Some would say money, or a kiss from a cute guy or girl and/or shopping spree. I think happiness is way more then those quick fixes. The word happiness is hard to define and it is different for everyone. Professor Gilleo reviewed in philosophy class that Aristotle puts it as “moral goodness” and that happiness is also tied to virtue. “Moral goodness is the result of habit. We become just by performing just acts, temperate by performing temperate ones, brave by performing brave ones. We are not born good or bad; rather, we learn to be one or the other by the activities in which we engage.” Happiness to me is not by those quick fixes. I find happiness in being bored and taking time out of the day for just me. Sitting outside even if the sun is not shining bright just to listen to the peace of silence and smile at people who walk by. Happiness to me is hanging out with people who make you feel good for you are. You are who you hang out with and life is too short to be dwelling on the negative. Have you ever heard of the term nirvana? It means you have hit a state of enlightenment in which all desires, pain and suffering and mental anguish disappear. It seems impossible, you can feel it when you use mind over matter. The next time you have fifteen minutes sit in silence and clear your mind. Take away all those stresses of school and social life and act like you don’t have those in your life right now. While those are gone take a look at your life. I did and I have nothing to complain about. Life is so good right now, and even though I have my problems like every other person I choose to now let it wear on my sleeve. Smile at every person you pass and have some positive attitude even when it is hard. Trust me: it is contagious and it will make the world a better place.