While I have been in leadership roles in the past, my role in Student Affairs at Ryerson has me in my first supervisory role “officially”, and I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what leadership means, and I’ve been assessing my own performance as much as I have been thinking about how the students I work with can do even better in their work.
Lately I’ve been limiting my personal time spent online scrolling through so-called news feeds; this is ironic for two reasons. The first being my job requires me to work extensively online in blogging, social media, and video conversations, promotions, and creations. The second is I recently upgraded my phone and needless to say moving up in the smartphone world and yet turning off my data is a little backwards. But, I have a feeling my changing online habits are actually thanks to my job rather than in spite of it.
There are days when I wake and I know, nearly upon opening my eyes or sometimes as I brush the last remains of dreams from my consciousness, that “Today will be a lonely one.” Not in the sense of being alone, it is rare in Toronto to find myself at any point actually “alone”, but in the sense that there are days, rare enough that I can’t call it chronic but often enough that I recognize the signs, when I have no desire nor willingness to engage with any other persons. On these days, I prefer, in fact I may describe it more as a “need,” to be and to feel lonely. Sometimes it is in the sad way that loneliness is most readily interpreted, but other times it is simply just the feeling of being alone.
When I started this blog, I was beginning my two year graduate degree, a beginning that now feels ages ago. Now, another fall cycle has begun and I’m in my third year living in Toronto having jumped into an entirely new role as a student affairs professional. With this transition has come increased anxiety as well as excitement, all mixed together and changing with each moment. I have, however, had the chance to celebrate some first successes in my new role, a space where I feel supported to experiment as well as to fail, and it’s been these successes that have propelled me forward even in my moments of doubt. Today I had the pleasure of sharing a students’ personal reflection to the wide audience and when he told me it meant a good deal to him, it was as meaningful a success as I could hope for.