I wrote this to myself–word for word–two years ago. I just opened it. It’s incredible to me how much of this is true today. I almost feel weird about how well I knew my future self. Anyway…
You made it. Now what? I hope you’ve given a lot of thought to what you plan to do after today. As you go forward, remember everything you learned here. Do not simply dwell on the “practical” or “useful & applicable” experiences you had. Take everything together. Each moment is equally important and meaningful.
Today (summer 2013) I am still confused. Did I make the right decision to come here? Is it worth it to get paid nothing and live far from stuff? Why did I choose to do this? Today my answer is: “To learn Chinese, to rebalance myself, to reflect on the future.” I want to change lives but right now it’s about me. I’m sure YOU don’t feel that way. You’ve given EVERYTHING to this job, your first job. Your students by now should know how dedicated you are, because after all, they ARE your job. Their success is your success. Therefore being selfish, taking a selfish approach to your own success means doing the best you could for them. Be selfish in that way. Don’t compromise. Be the best, most memorable person you can be. Good luck.