I’ve always prided myself on being a reader. One pastor I was particularly fond of always said, “readers are leaders.” So, I invariably would secretly puff my chest out and think, that is me.
Over the years, I’ve taught adults the basics of reading and writing, helping them to succeed in passing high school equivalency tests. My chest puffed out even further.
I returned to school for a second master’s and various professional certifications. Reading. No problem. Writing. No problem.
Then reality set in when I started the doctoral program. Grammarly was having a field day with my writing. I often got lost in what assignments were due and the specifics of each assignment. I was like a deer in the headlights. My self-esteem – puffed up chest – quickly deflated.
By the second semester’s end, I saw a revitalization in my writing and reading. The desire to finish a book went entirely out the window because of the impracticality. Necessity is the mother of invention.
Starting this new semester with self-assessments is brilliant. To focus on fine-tuning skills that, as an adult, I had grown to take advantage of is a challenge that I am excited about. I recognized that I have become quite good at skimming information. However, if I juggle too many other tasks, I often miss critical details because I neglect the analytical reading until it’s too late. As a result, I frequently misread assignments and miss essential information regarding how to proceed and what is expected.
A prime example is this first blog assignment. I read self-assessments and, in my mind, assuming it also meant the LCP assessment had to be included. No way could I finish all that in time. Hence, I’m posting late.
In college, I was a massive fan of the 3×5 index cards. Honestly, that’s all we had. I tried to use those last semester, and they just didn’t work. I recognized I needed my notes stored electronically, so I improvised. This semester, I’m looking forward to using a tool that will solidify my approach to note-taking. Thanks to what I learned in our first year, I have begun to interact with books by writing my initial responses or questions in the margins. Taking the next step and cataloging and connecting my notes to other books, articles, and journal notes is a fascinating adventure I am ready for.
My writing comes easily. I may not be as sharp or concise as I could be, so that aspect of my writing must improve. I love to write, and I want to learn how to write from a deeper space, organically, with the synthesized notes of other experts bubbling up to reflect the power of my voice. My thoughts.