By Drew Shriner | Echo
As this year concludes, I have become quite reflective. Endings tend to bring that out in me. Upon reaching important times, times of change, I look backward rather than forward. I evaluate. I question
I say goodbye to a friend, and I wonder whether the goodbye could have been made more significant, whether I gave my best to that friendship over the year. I clean my room and think that I should have cleaned it more regularly during the semester (but then I have the fun surprise of finding things that I thought were lost!).
Just a few nights ago, I "passed the torch" for a leadership position, and I could not help but question whether I had done a good job at my role. My self-critical nature said no.
Even as I am writing this column, my last of the year, I am looking backward, evaluating each column, wondering whether it was worth reading. I hope they were.
These questions are important to me. As I evaluate, I am able to remember the different moments of the year, to revisit special, influential, ordinary or simple memories, times that challenged and shaped me.
I hope that we are all asking questions. That is one of the main goals of this column: to propose more questions than it answers - to prompt the readers to think for themselves.
I hope that your questions are different than mine. I hope that you are willing to share some of those questions so that I can have new questions to think about.
Perhaps most of all, I hope that as we look back, as we question, we then pivot and look forward. When we fail to pivot, we can easily become trapped in a spiral of regret and revision. It can easily become difficult to move forward from this place. When we pivot, we can learn from our mistakes and shortcomings, and do our best to not repeat them in the next season of life, whether that is at Taylor or not.
Some of these questions can be very practical and basic. How many hours did you sleep on a nightly basis? What foods did you eat? How often did you procrastinate assignments?
Some can be more personal and more abstract. Did you use your time well? Did you value others above yourself? What kind of person were you? How would others describe your year?
There are many, many questions to ask oneself. It is my prayer that as this year closes, we will all be able to find time to look back, question and then pivot. Let us use this natural break in our rhythms to press "restart" and be more like the versions of ourselves that we want to be.