There times in our lives when things make perfect sense. Sometimes they are but small moments of clarity when we are able to understand that everywhere we have been and everything we have experienced was preparation for this moment, in which we feel uniquely prepared to exist. I had one of those moments on Saturday.
I’d had a really difficult time finishing my literature review which was an assignment I gave myself, but took as an independent study course. I talked to Newman about it and told him I was having a hard time because I did not connect in any way to the higher ed org literature. I found myself much more intrigued by business literature. Pouring through one Warren Bennis book after another. I’d lost my connection to higher ed and that scared me a bit. I don’t know the business world, and working with students in higher education was the only thing that remained the same from my original research idea upon entering the program. It is not that I am afraid to lose higher ed, it is that I am not sure where else I fit?
Anyway, so I was having feelings of confusion so this summer (about three weeks now) I haven’t read a thing related to school. That was until this weekend. I saw a colleague from the group relations conference who lives and works in New York while I was out to lunch with Dr. A. I wrote to him and said, “How serendipitous to have seen you on campus. I mention it as such, because it was a not-so-gentle reminder to get back into my literature. Friday evening I had a dream about a book, so when I woke up Saturday morning, I bought it and read it. The book is called The Spell of the Sensuous and it was on the “recommended but not required” book list for my Bali trip. Curious that I even remembered it or dreamed of it, then again, not so curious.”
I read this book and it completely rocked me. It is way too much to explain, but what I can say is that it made my research even more narrow and focused. And left me wondering if I should keep it that small. No, not small, specific. But I know the answer. The answer is yes, and I am not even nervous about telling The Chair about it tomorrow during our meeting. I actually think she will find it makes perfect sense. It brings our very first conversation we ever had back into relevance.
One thing that I do that I am grateful for is that I pay attention to very small things. I often sell myself short claiming to be a big picture thinker who finds details tedious. But the fact of the matter is, I have worked hard at appreciating both. Tuning yourself.
Whenever I think of this research as I see it now my entire body gets hot. My fingers tingle and My mind races. I know this is it and this is the work I am meant to explore. Or rather, this is the moment I’ve caught the lightening. Someone wrote on instagram the other day, “When you are in your own lane, there is no traffic”. Here’s hoping.