It's at this time of year that I really begin to think about what I'm thankful for. I know that I'm thankful for the obvious "Sunday School" answers: I'm thankful for my Savior, my home, my family, food, an education, etc. But what are the things that I'm thankful that I normally don't think about?
When you attend an online school with thousands of kids all over the world, you'd think that you wouldn't feel very lonely. But this is one of the rare times that I truly do feel lonely. Part of that is because I'm an introvert, so I'm not very proactive when it comes to making friends and building relationships. I realized last week that in order to truly maintain friendships and relationships with people, you have to proactively seek out time with them, instead of waiting for natural events to give you the opportunity.
Some of you might be familiar with the mild stress, worry, and concern that comes from college prep in junior year of high school. Almost every college prep pamphlet, website, and program in the world tells high school juniors to ponder what they love doing, what they're talents are, and how to apply that to an expertise for adulthood. Obviously, it's kind of scary to think about. "What if I'm not as good at this as all the other kids my age are, so it's not as impressive to college entrance administrators?" "What if I turn out not to like this particular area of interest 10 years from now, even though I absolutely adore it now?" "How do I choose between these two interests?" "How do I turn as weird of an interest as this one into a career?" Lots of questions, lots of thinking, lots of unnecessary worry, because I know that I have a lot more time than I intuitively think. I just need to keep analyzing what I enjoy, and ask God to help me sort out what His plan is for me.
I used to really love reading a lot, but now I'm not finding the inspiration to do so. I think one of the problems is that I overwhelm myself with school reading by putting it off (because they're not always fun to read) and then I decide that I can't read anything because I feel guilty reading anything else but schoolwork. I'm figuring out that if I catch up and keep up, then I'll have a lot more time to read what I truly enjoy. But for right now, I'm very behind, and I need to focus hard on catching up.
5) 10,000 hours
Back to the talents again. An author named Malcolm Gladwell said that the approximate amount of time that a true expert spends in his field of work is about 10,000 hours, or around ten years. I think I know what I want to spend 10,000 hours in, but to look at that number is both inspiring and daunting at the same time. But that number keeps haunting me... Ten thousand hours of practice in order to achieve expertise. How will I spend ten thousand hours of my life?
Question for the Reader: What's on your mind?
"Jesus answered, 'Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world.'" --John 11:9