This past Saturday, I was invited by a friend of mine to listen to her presentation at Seogang University, in Seoul. I wasn’t sure of what to expect, but I was curious. I didn’t know anybody else, except the speaker, so it was also a great opportunity to meet new people.
The presentation focused on goal setting, looking at our strengths and weaknesses, and how to work with both aspects. I sat at a table with four other people. We had one team leader who would lead the discussion activities when the time came. After a brief introduction by the presenter and the main host, we were all asked to first write down our goals. Instead of just listing each goal, we needed to draw a tree and a fruit with the goal inside. The bigger the fruit, the bigger the goal.
What are your goals?
For myself, my goals are
- Create and maintain financial stability (I still have loans to pay off)
- Develop more positive and meaningful relationships
- Develop and maintain a sense of inner peace (like Buddha)
- Become a better teacher through professional development and more training
- Earn a post-graduate degree (Master’s/ Ph.D) when I can afford it (in both time and money)
The paper we drew our “goal-tree” on also had a small calendar at the bottom and we had to fill-in what we did each day to achieve our goals. Goal setting is a great exercise for teachers and students. It’s important to visualize what we want to do in the future, and then work on ways to make that future possible.
For students, goal setting can help them plan what courses to take in high school or university so they can get into the career they want. Students can also look at personal aspects of themselves, and set goals to improve some personality trait or behavior. For teachers, setting goals helps them develop strategies to make lessons more effective and interactive. These goals may also have to do with how the teacher manages student behavior, or a personal aspect.
What is your personality type?
We were also given a basic personality-type self assessment, in which we had to rank certain behaviors/thoughts/feelings from 1~5; 1 being “not true at all,” to 5 being “strongly true”. There were nine columns – A through I – and we had to fill out each statement as honestly as possible. When we finished, we had to tally the scores up and write them on the back, at the bottom of the page. After that, we had to look at a chart that looked like this:
The speaker, Lynn, spoke about her own experiences in university and how she changed over time. She helped us discuss our strengths and weakness according to the personality-type chart she showed us. We discussed what personality trait was the strongest, and the positives and negatives of that trait. Now, I had already had a good understanding of this information already since my degree is in psychology, but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t re-evaluate my understanding and try to look at things from a new angle. It’s very important to engage in these types of activities from time to time.
Nothing is permanent
People change as they grow and learn more about themselves and others over time. Lynn also encouraged us to meet with our table groups afterward to further discuss our results and figure out ways to achieve our goals.
What’s the secret to success?
There isn’t one, really. Success is never final, and what it means to be “successful” is different from person to person. One thing successful people have in common, though, is that they never gave up. They always worked hard to achieve their goals.
Bill Cosby’s quote puts it best: