Monday, January 18, 2010
"He who breaks a resolution is a weakling;
He who makes one is a fool."
~ F.M. Knowles
I’m not the type who makes new year resolutions as I think in terms of periodic goals rather than the year’s.
A fool I shall be in 2010 for I’ve since made some at the end of last year and managed to accomplish one right in the first week of 2010 -- I finally let go of my tuition assignments.
It was a tough battle with my inner self, weighing the pros and cons and arguing with one Jolene and then the other.
It was even tougher to break the news, having taught the boy since he was in P2. He is in Sec 2 this year. As for the P4 girl, I was intending to teach her till P6 but if I retain the mentality of teaching them till their major exams are over, it would be a neverending cycle of PSLE and O-levels.
I’ve given up all other tutees along the way except for this siblings pair as I always feel that I’ve an important role to play in their lives.
To be honest, I really enjoy teaching them and watching them grow. They also enjoyed my company whenever I stayed past tuition hours to talk to them, play games with them or just helping them in their art or project work or other everyday tasks. In a way, they became too reliant on me for all the tasks in their lives since their parents were always not around.
They were not receptive to having other people teaching them and hence I continued on while my energy allowed me to do so. Teaching them on off days, on early knock off days and even took leave whenever I could to teach them during their mid years and finals.
They were that important.
Now that I’m finally able to let go of them, I would have more time to accomplish my other goals.
I’ve always wanted to take up some courses.
Throughout the years, there would be friends asking if I’m interested in taking up some courses.
Diving, wakeboarding, surfing, tennis, hip hop, salsa, freestyle…
Culinary course, lifeskill course, language course…
So many courses, so little time… I was/ am interested but I could not take any course with all my off days packed.
Driving has been put on hold since I was 18. People who know me from then would know about my gripe on this. Having the time but no money since my savings would always be put into better use back then and then after that when I’ve got the money, time wasn’t on my side.
It pricks me whenever people widen their eyes and exclaim, “I thought you knew how to drive!”
Anyhow, I figured it’s wiser to take and pass driving before all the centres relocate to one big centre in Woodlands, before the “cheater” parking poles are taken away, before the multi-storey carpark tests are administered… in short before all the major changes set in.
There is also something which I want to learn really badly. It has been a dream since young and the dream of learning it is further fuelled by some changes in my life the past few months. While some may perceive this skill as inadequate, I consider it an essential lifeskill in my situation.
I heard that it’s really tough for ladies to pass this course but I’m determined to learn it. Even if I fail at the end of the day, I would have no regrets. At least, I could tell myself that I’ve tried.
I won’t reveal what it is and I think only 4 of you know about it. To these people, shush about it ok?
I will also strive to live the mantra of “There is more to life than just working and making money.”
I think I’ve shared this story before but I’ll share it once more. Hopefully, we could all pay more importance to the golf balls and the coffee with frenz instead of worrying about the sand.
A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.
The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls.He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.
The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with an emphatic "yes."
The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.
Now," said the professor, as the laughter subsided, "I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life.
The golf balls are the important things. Your family, your children,your faith, your health, your friends, and your favourite passions. Things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter. Your job, your house, and your car.
The sand is everything else. The small stuff. "If you put the sand into the jar first," he continued, "there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you.
Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your partner out to dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal. Take care of the golf balls first, the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand."
One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented. The professor smiled. "I'm glad you asked. It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend."