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Things to watch out as you transition into a bigger platform

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Two seemingly disparate thoughts had been playing out in my mind but as I dwelled deeper I realized that they were intrinsically bound together. A transition by my 6-year-old into first grade and my writing. Quite an unlikely pair of thoughts to share a connection, right? Allow me to explain.

R has begun first grade this year. Now, I've come to understand that for kids and parents, this comes as a fairly huge step from the more cocooned atmosphere of a preschool. The subjects to learn branch out into several from the 3 or 4 main ones in pre-kg. There are also different subject teachers that the kids need to interact with as opposed to just a couple in the early years. Since the kids are entering a more independent phase, they are also being trained to be more responsible. That translates into self-written homework notes in the school diary (under the teacher's guidance) and being able to handle a bit of a burst in studies and related activities. So, in a nutshell, there's a bit of a change that the kids (and their parents) need to come to terms with.

Now, this already tricky combination of factors gets amplified if the child has been in a different preschool or preschooling environment; the adaptation or changes can get a bit more trying.  While children are natural adapters to situations and circumstances, it's the adults who seem more like the spoilt brats.

Feelings of insecurity, apprehensions about choices made, comparisons with the erstwhile environment, anxiety over the child's future, were thrown out in the raw, discussed, and dissected. In this, two sets of parents emerged clearly. One that subscribed to these feelings and the other, including me, that did not. While I empathize with the other set and concede that these feelings are natural, I do wish the parents showed some patience in the system and faith in their own choice. Any transition, minor or major, takes time and as parents, we are required to assume to role of the unwavering, solid anchor in the lives of our children who are making forays into the wider world.

As I thought more about this, I realized that what I wished in the above scenario applied perfectly well to my other line of thought. My writing! I've been struggling with writing and only lately I'm beginning to emerge out of this seemingly long span of writer's block, self-doubts, anxiety, and insecurity.

My short span of 5 years of blogging witnessed a lot of changes in the way this enigmatic world of words and connections functioned. I had lived a cocooned life of blogging and was happy in my own frog world. As I got thrown out into deeper waters of powerful writers, social media connections, and unending possibilities of gratification and personal growth, I faltered. Like the village belle making her way in a larger city, I was initially attracted to a larger platform and I dreamed of making a mark for myself. It was a period of transition for me. A big one. Yet, I did not show the patience in the system or the faith in my abilities. I made the mistake of not making the effort to forge new connections or trust the ones I had. I was new, insecure, and doubted my own capabilities.

It's been months of introspection and objective thinking where I've consciously tried to steer clear of the path of self-pity and low self-worth.

Two very contrasting situations found a common root in my mind and I thought I should file away these learnings here.

10 pointers that we could all keep in mind in face of a big transition:

  1. Observe how the new system works
  2. Take help from the veterans
  3. Voice your fears but refrain from feeling victimized
  4. Give yourself time to make new connections
  5. Adapt to changes in working styles
  6. The new is not necessarily evil and the old is not always gold
  7. Accept that acquired skills may be rusty and need a reevaluation
  8. Expect delays in learning
  9. Have faith in your choice
  10. Be patient 
Do you agree with these or did you think I was rambling? Do share your thoughts. And, oh, if you didn't notice already, I changed the look of my blog. New learnings and beginnings need to look good on the outside too, right? Did you like the look?

Linking the post to the Yeah Write#274 weekly challenge for Non-Fiction category

Comments

  1. Really loved the very clinical yet empathetic way you linked the two concepts. I especially can understand the sense of inadequacy when it comes to one's writing? Secret? Every writer goes through it. Don't ever believe otherwise. It is in questioning these things that our mind becomes clear and yes, willingness to learn and always improve ourselves comes a very close second. R will do fine, as always and you, my dear, are doing great, in my book :)

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  2. Yes, and the feeling of inadequacy can be nerve-wracking. Shailaja, thank you so much for always being encouraging <3. This means a lot!
    And, you didn't comment on the blog look. I did some html coding too, so I'm feeling a bit proud ;-)

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  3. I never ever saw you going through a phase of self doubt and inadequacy, Uma. I have always looked up to your writings. But maybe, this phase was good for you. Every one of us needs to go through this to evolve in our works. I hope you will be able to write more consistently and produce much more worthy contents to satisfy your writing quench hereon. And R, I'm sure adapting to the new year will not be very hard for him as you worry. I see that in my kid. Here at 6 he is already finishing year 1 this July. They do well than we think. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And yeah, loved the new look. I'm in my phone so don't know how it is in laptop, but love the new colors. :)

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    2. Hey Vinitha!! Looks like I did not come across as intended with respect to R. I'm not the one who's worried. Was speaking for some other set of parents. Edited the article suitably. Hope it now reads correctly.

      As for writing, oh well, what can I say? I used to be someone who blogged consistently and the graph dropped in the last many months. In a way, happy to note that I did not sound sappy enough for my readers to take notice, then ;-)

      And, Vinitha, I'm ever grateful for readers like you who've shown faith and even elevated my worth. Thank you for always writing in with encouraging words :-)

      Delete
  4. It's funny--once I stopped trying to be a "successful blogger" (whatever that even means), my writing became much more satisfying. It's the blogger's eternal struggle.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I get you, Natalie. The writing when written purely for the love of it must shine more and thereby satisfying. It's surely a blogger's struggle to maintain that fine balance.

      Thank you, Natalie, for reading and leaving a comment!

      Delete
  5. I've been an on-again, off-again blogger for more than a decade -- sometimes taking a break is a good way to get perspective on what you want your blog to be or where you want to take your writing. I'm glad you've joined us a yeah write. The parallel between your writing and your child's steps forward in school is one I'm sure folks can relate to. Trust yourself.

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    Replies
    1. That's a very valid point about taking a break to get a fresh perspective. Thank you, Meg, for understanding and the kind words.

      Delete
  6. Uma, this is the kind of writing style I see myself adapting to. Not that I don't like my own style, I love it! But, that's how we writers are, always critical about our own craft!
    I so loved reading about the transformation phase both your babies are going through. Moving on to Primary School is a HUGE change kids go through. But with a mum like you, I am sure your little one will do great!
    And as far as your blogging. ..wow's the word!
    I, too, am having some big plans for my blog and will be needing all the help I can get. I know I am late (it's been more than 3 yrs since I began blogging), but I feel now is the time to test new waters, try some make-overs and work hard to leave some footprints on the sands of time! Ooh! Does that sound too boastful already?! 😀
    I am going to follow you closely Uma...I know I will learn quite a lot!
    Thanks for this wonderful post!
    Best wishes!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Shilpa, those are really big words for my blog and writing. I'm not sure how to react, so I'll just say a BIG thanks.

      Frankly, Shilpa, you have a lovely style of writing and should continue and not change it. Much as we like to and want to emulate styles we admire, it's only when you write like you can, the best comes out. I think it takes a while to figure out one's groove when it comes to style. We might need to keep polishing our style but not entirely changing it.

      As for taking the blog to the next level, as you can see, I haven't really done much on that front except for changing the design template and I'll need a lot of help too on that front.

      Not at all boastful, we should have grand(er) goals and work towards it.
      All the very best to you too, Shilpa and thanks a bunch for leaving such a detailed and encouraging comment on my space. :-)

      Delete

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