Getting Lost to Find Yourself

I’ve decided that high school is about finding yourself, about shaping your identity. It’s discovering how you want be thought of and what you want to remember about yourself years from now. In reaching this conclusion, I’ve realized that it’s okay to feel a bit disoriented every now and then. Because it’s in those moments away from the beaten path that you find what you really want and get closer to who you truly are… You start to see who you want to be.

So getting lost isn’t bad. I’m sure I’ve heard a saying before, that goes something like “in getting lost, I found myself”. Well, I can attest to the truth in this saying.

I feel like although this is a bit of a revelation on my part, this concept has been around for ages, especially in education. Sabbaticals anyone? In my eyes, the point of sabbaticals is to get away from the daily routine so that one can explore passions and assess life. These excursions into grey area, the land of the semi lost, provide a key opportunity to rethink the path you’re on. And I think that it works pretty well. Most teachers I’ve known who went on a sabbatical seem to have a rejuvenated sense of purpose, a new zest for their work and their life.

So on that note, I wonder if incorporating such a thing into a student’s school life would be beneficial? Maybe like a gap year between middle school and high school? Gap years (normally taken between high school and college) are an example but they occur after initial schooling is done. They DO serve to open up minds and help students think about what they want to do in their future, as it is rapidly approaching. But would it be a good idea to force students to get lost in order to find themselves or merely let that happen on it’s natural course?

I’m not sure on that point. For now, all I know is that next time I feel slightly disoriented and a bit lost, I’ll take the time to reflect and profit from what seemed like an unfortunate situation.

2 thoughts on “Getting Lost to Find Yourself

  1. Gap years between middle and high school is an interesting and new concept. Gap years between high school and college are quickly becoming the norm. Schools like Harvard send letters to students encouraging them to take a gap year, and colleges uniformly report that students who do this are more focused and see greater success in college. If students start planning early for a gap year, the possibilities for what one can do are almost limitless.

  2. Pingback: Edublog Nominations « Quantum Progress

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