Back to School / Back to Ourselves

September is a great time to self-reflect on your grade in this School of Life

September is a time of new beginnings, be it a new academic year, the Jewish New Year, a new Fall season, and in 2021, a work situation for many that is invoking back-to-school jitters after being out of the office for so long!

This year also marks the 20th anniversary of 9/11, when so much changed in our city, country and world; if you were more directly impacted, please make sure to be extra gentle with yourself around this time, as so much has and will be brought up about it.

Two decades after such a life-altering event, and because we are at this accelerated transformational period in our history, it’s a good time to reflect on what have we learned since then and how we want to live. Are we repeating the same mistakes now, individually or collectively, 20 years later? In other words, are we doing the “same boyfriend, different clothes” routine, as the saying goes, in our jobs, relationships, health, current events? Where in your life might you still be stuck in unhealthy or inauthentic patterns?

Whether you are an official student or not, what do you want your new “school year” to feel like? How do you want it to end? Think about how you have grown both in the past year and the past 20, as it seems we are living in a different world (i.e., just think about all the technology and social media that have emerged since then and how they have changed your daily life, relationships, work, etc., and then all the 2020 changes by themselves … #mindblowing).

We are living in the School of Life, so it behooves us to become more aware of and appreciate the many classrooms where we find ourselves. With the innate trials and tribulations inherent in such a setup, instead of getting upset or being totally reactive — which is not always easy, especially these past several years — take a deep breath and try to see any given situation as the teacher, homework, quiz or exam that it is, and perhaps make a different or better choice.

And trust there is no failure, only learning, even if we have to repeat grades until we finally graduate! Big lessons and massive growth abound in these extraordinary times, so let’s all be the lifelong learners we are meant to be.

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Kristina Leonardi is a nationally recognized career and life coach, speaker and author who for over 14 years has empowered individuals to make lasting professional and personal changes aligned with their true passions and talents while fulfilling their role in the world at large.With a holistic and personal growth-oriented approach, she has helped hundreds of men and women over the past decade improve their job performance, enter or re-enter the job force, change careers, better manage their time and stress, and live happier, more meaningful, balanced lives. Her specialty is working with people who feel stuck or are in transition and can help you clarify exactly what you want to do, identify blocks, issues, and patterns in your way, and offer proven ideas, resources, and action steps to get you there.

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