Introduction

http://www.emptycagesdesign.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/productivity-300x268.jpegGaia University honours, encourages and enables personal development. One of the key accreditation criteria is how we are developing as individuals in relationship to our self-care, worldviews and patterns, as well as our ability to manage our time and promises and meet personal goals.

This page contains a reflection about my personal development goals and whether I have achieved them, or whether they were renegotiated. It shares observations of my personal patterns that I have observed during my MSc and aimed to change. It also includes my summative reflections on how I have improved in managing my time and promises when engaging with the world.

Goals Evaluation

In my MSc Capstone learning intentions pathway design, I set the goals below for my personal development. In this table I provide commentary on each goal and whether I have achieved it or negotiated it.

Goal Commentary
To have anchored nourishing self-care habits After nearly two years of chronic illness and pain, I have finally learnt to enjoy resting! I have overcome disassociation and addressed long term patterns of workaholism. I now have anchored nourishing habits - baths, restorative yoga, more sleep, films in bed and more. All the things an overactive nervous system can’t handle at the beginning, I’m now enjoying (and it’s wonderful).
To be in a joyful, nourishing, long-lasting relationship I have been having regular counselling to address long-term patterns around relationships and intimacy, as well as ‘action-learning’ through relationships themselves.
To be a competent and skilled kickboxer Sadly, this had to be negotiated due to developing costochondritis.
To participate in a 10k race Sadly, this had to be negotiated due to developing costochondritis.
To have finished by left arm sleeve of tattoos and have work done on my legs Minus a few leaves on my arm, this has been achieved!
To have mastered basic meditation to support my self Achieved
To have optimum nutrition and a diverse, plant-based diet Due to my chronic illness, my diet has become more restricted and this has been really challenging, however, I will be seeing an allergy and nutritional specialists shortly and designing a nutrition plan for myself in 2018.
To continue to invest energy into friendships & relationships with family Definitely achieved, although I wish I could have spent more time with my grandfather this year.
To have invested in my spiritual development and feel a continuing deep relationship with the land Definitely achieved.
To have a greater connection to the hardcore scene Achieved, but would still like to invest energy in this.
To have regenerative emotional, mental and physical energy and holistic resilience I wouldn’t describe my current state of health as regenerative, however, I do feel like I have invested huge amounts of energy into my personal healing and this has been empowering.

 

Personal Patterns Observations

In my capstone LIPD, I created this mind map about patterns and behaviours no longer serving me: http://www.xmind.net/m/RHLL

I feel really empowered that during my MSc capstone year I have significantly changed these patterns. I believe my health is a huge driver. I also believe that by mapping out these patterns and behaviours I effectively ‘named them’ and this has been essential in changing them.

The patterns I am still working on addressing in this mind map include:
- Overcommitting (work)
- Not expressing my needs for support - this has been hugely developed, however, I still don’t ask for help soon enough, I still worry about ‘putting’ on others and harm myself in the process by not asking for support or delegating tasks

This autumn, I enrolled in a course called ‘Hawthorn Heart: Boundary skills for femmes’ which has been absolutely incredible in helping me to set better boundaries for myself in all of my projects and caring responsibilities.

Image result for hawthorn heart andi grace 

Developing Self-Care Skills

Gaia University is so incredible that as an institution it creates a culture of personal development and self-care. Deadlines can be negotiated, commentary on your self-care gains is graded(!), webinars offer support and guidance on this topic. For every single output, I have had to provide commentary on this aspect of my life and through tracking it I have definitely, and finally, developed a toolkit that serves me to care for myself.

My journey documenting this process is best captured by my Overcoming Burnout blogs. These are blogs that I wrote after getting sick in February 2016. I never expected the series to grow as they did (they’ll be becoming a book too!). I cover topics such as gender, class, herbs, the biology of burnout, composting grief and more. You can see a bullet point list below or check them out directly on my website.