"Life begins at the end of your comfort zone."

~Neale Donald Walsch~

Sunday, 11 May 2014

What's your story?

Stories reflect the very essence of who were are. There are some that think hand writing can reflect our personalities. Milton Newman Bunker invented a system called graphoanalysis that determines our personalities based on the slants and curvature of our hand writing. Many of my students still like to make hand written notes because they say they recall information more easily if they have written it down. Whilst hand writing is fast becoming a thing of the past I don't think it will ever be completely replace with technology. At least I hope not.

Every where we go we leave bits of ourselves in the world we live in. I remember watching the film Gattaga and thinking do we really shed 500 million cells a day? It seems we leave an imprint of ourselves now through social media and technology as we weave our way through the internet and our new social environments. More and more we print and write using technology and every strike of the keyboard is an intended thought reflecting yet again another inch of who we are. So even while we may try to remain ambiguous to those who we don't know, particularly online, there is no escaping the actual person behind the writing. Robots will never be able to reflect individual thought and personality.

Much of what I do in life is listen to stories. I love stories and always have. Adult education lends itself to a lot of story telling. Without listening to people's stories we can't really help them reach their potential. Tailoring learning to meet each person's need is so important in adult education because these learning experiences often affect not only the individual but their families also. Changing your life or career can have a major impact on your family and students need quality educational outcomes to meet the great sacrifice they are making to their lives and their families.

Sharing the learning journey becomes part of the weave of your life as a teacher. For many students writing their story becomes extremely powerful. I have had a number of students who had years of therapy only to find they felt free when they had written and shared their story were they ready to move on. Writing can be incredible intimate and leave you feeling vulnerable. It can allow thoughts to be processed and decisions to be set in concrete. For thousands of years writing can change the course of peoples lives. One love letter can set in course a motion that will completely change your life forever.  It is these stories that shape and frame us. The stories of our lives and those around us infect our thoughts, actions and deeds and it upon these that our working lives are influenced. We are who we are not by being hermits but by the stories and interaction with others. Stories have the power to change perceptions and allow us time to reflect and consider the state of play.

As I write this blog I am about to go to a funeral of a wonderful 91 year old lady who influenced my life
through her story. I hope that you have people in your life who influence your life story in a positive way and help you be the best person that only you can be. We can never try to be anyone other than ourselves and to try and do otherwise is to cheat ourselves and ignore the very core of who we are.

Even though I have not met a lot my teaching friends on social media they have become part of my story. Please keep sharing your stories with me, they enrich my life.

Until next week,

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