about two weeks ago, i had a surprising realization. it was one of my days off, and instead of getting up and going for a run or doing things on my to-do list or heading to the grocery store, i wanted to stay in bed. so i did. all day. i wanted to do nothing and by the time the sun went down, i was still in bed.
now, some people would say this is just something people need to do sometimes; humans need a "refresh" day. but the thing was, it was about the tenth time this had happened in a matter of weeks. and when i finally realized that, i had to acknowledge that i was horribly unhappy with my life as of late.
beautiful fall days couldn't even get me outside.
without getting too much in to the nitty gritty, i had to admit to myself that teaching was making me terribly unhappy. at the end of last year, i was pretty sure i didn't want to teach, but everyone in my department suggested i at least try it out. i didn't have a good argument against it, so i agreed to take on an undergraduate course for this fall quarter. it hasn't been a disaster or anything, but i really haven't enjoyed it for multiple reasons. and knowing that i was expected to teach for winter and spring was looming over me. knowing the root of the cause of my unhappiness was a bit of a relief, but it didn't really solve anything.
then, last week, i received an email with a course offer to teach next quarter. i knew they needed me to teach it; i'm the most qualified to teach the particular subject and it's a popular course. i knew my advisor wanted me to teach it; she thinks teaching experience is a huge benefit of our graduate program. and because of these factors, i was all too ready to send my acceptance. but something held me back.
my gut was telling me that i shouldn't accept the offer. i had all too recently admitted to myself that i truly don't enjoy the experience and that it was making me unhappy and increasing my anxiety, so why would i do it again? because it was expected of me? because i was afraid of making things hard on the department? those weren't very good reasons. it's not a requirement of my degree and i hadn't signed a contract yet; nothing was binding me to teaching. and so, after a few days of internal debate, i held my breath and sent in an email of non-acceptance.
the relief was instant, you guys. i immediately saw the light at the end of the tunnel, i started making mental plans of what my days will look like in winter quarter, and i felt...happy.
"so we're going to get out of bed more? not sure i like that..."
we always stress on our blogs the importance of physical health and healthy eating, but i think it's important to consider our mental health, as well. taking the time to admit when something isn't right and changing the situation, if you have the ability, is essential. i have to admit that i'm proud of myself for putting myself first and making the best choice for me. i'm choosing happiness.