If you could be anything……what would it be?

Published on 30th April 2020 under Blog Topic - Students,

The COVID 19 pandemic has been described repeatedly as ‘unprecedented’, ‘surreal’ and ‘these uncertain times’. It is truly unchartered territory for us all. There are many possible interpretations to help us explain or process what is going on for ourselves and our family. However, as a Guidance Counsellor and a Mindfulness Practitioner, I would like to offer up one thought.

I would like to suggest one proactive step that you can take now in relation to your college or post leaving certificate plans. This can be done by TY, 5th and 6th year students. The idea stems from reading the work of neuro psychologist Dan Siegel. He has many interesting insights on the workings of our mind and, this incredible tool, our brain.

Energy and Information

Siegel describes the mind as a processer of energy and information. What does that mean and how does this help me, you may ask? Before I answer, can I ask you two questions?

  1. Have you been feeling bored, lethargic, demotivated, annoyed? = E
  2. Are you constantly refreshing your social media pages to get the latest updates? = I

If so, you are possibly experiencing the unproductive result of energy and information brought about by the COVID 19 restrictions. For instance, you are not using up energy in the same way i.e. seeing your friends, exercise, movement between classes, stimulation from subjects taught in class, even the jostle in the school corridors. Equally your information channels are more limited, and a lot are via some form of screen i.e. TV, phone, news, Zoom meetings etc. This combination can make us feel claustrophobic, irritable or overwhelmed.

Find some Certainty

Now add into the mix uncertainty in relation to leaving certificate subject choice, post leaving certificate indecision, college course confusion. It can all seem too much.  How can we overcome these negative feelings and move into a place of contentment and focus? One suggestion is to reach out to your Guidance Counsellor and get some work done! He/She can suggest some research work, discuss subject preferences and plans for the future. At this stage, they should have some direction from school management and may be able to give you some clarity around what to expect for the rest of the school year.

Alternatively, you could talk to someone like me. I use psychometric testing including My Eirquest and My Unichoices to help you to identify your aptitudes, interests and motivations. Zoom meetings can be intimidating, so these meetings can be by phone too.

So, my question to you is: If you could be anything……what would it be?