In preparing for an assignment for my teaching practices class, I took a wrong turn and almost completely, in my mind, bombed the exercise. We had to take asana and break it down in a 10 minutes lesson. In all honesty, I thought the assignment was pointless and stupid. I disregarded the fact that there were so many things I could have done. It was all about my mindset and instead it turned into a battle with my ego. How many times in life do I take this mindset and apply it to everyday life?
Being very present to my negative emotions, I realized I could take on the rude attitude towards a teachers that, in the previous week, taught us about kindness. This rang in my mind all weekend and into this week. How could I convey that the assignment was pointless and stupid without sounding ungrateful or even rude? Stop. The very thought of this IS ungrateful and rude. I was not grateful to have the opportunity to learn something about myself (which happened anyway) and it is rude to tell a teacher that an assignment is stupid.
So, I finished the assignment half-assed with a horrible attitude. I submitted the lesson plan to her via email and she responded with a question about my missing motivation piece, a suggestion to correct an error about the distance of the student’s feet and asked if I was to make a chart or anything and to submit it before class. Then, this is when I got really aggravated but was still present to my feelings about the assignment. I was able to witness my emotions rather than be with them which made a huge difference in my reaction. Meenal ma’am was only making the assignment and was not the assignment itself which was the root of my frustration.
I told her that the distance on the feet was correct according to my resources and she replied that, after another teacher’s guidance, I was correct. Then, I was really frustrated and learned that my ego was really at play here. I completely forgot that as teachers we are still learning too and that teachers can sometimes be wrong as well. I corrected my assignment and showed up to class with the thought of it still all being pointless.
We started class and another classmate presented first and I started to realize that I perceived the entire assignment wrong and that I could have done so much searching within the assignment. She told a story about asana relating to humanity and how we as teachers learn from each other. It was completely beautiful. After her presentation, it was my turn. I almost bombed as I was thinking about all the guilt for my thoughts about the assignment and how I didn’t give this my all. Even with my blunder, I still gave a satisfactory explanation of the asana and passed. Ironically, the quote that I wrote on the board said, “If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.”
With all of this said, I could have and should have done better. However, no matter how much training or experience you can have, you can always learn something. I lost faith in my ability in this assignment. I could apply this to so many areas of my life - my conflict in failed friendships or relationships, the challenges my brother gives to me emotionally, something that I don’t want to do and the perception of a ‘hater’. Are they not all there to teach me something? They are not stupid or pointless. There is a profound lesson in graditude in that and, now, I’m ready to look at these challenges as learning experiences.