I've been thinking long and hard about whether I want to share what I hope to achieve over this next two years with you. While I'm excited to share them, so that you can help me be accountable to the goals I've set, I'm also afraid of raising your expectations of me. I'm afraid I will disappoint you, my family and most of all, I'm afraid of letting myself down.
But I figure, starting off this journey fearing that I will not achieve all that i hope to, isn't quite ideal. This is the beginning of a journey of possibilities for me and therefore I should be dreaming big, hoping for the best. Most of all, I intend to work towards achieving all my goals.
And I think you, and just this simple process of journaling, will help keep me on track. Hold me accountable to these, will you?
So, here goes.
I am here in Evanston, Illinois attending a 2 year Masters in Learning and Organizational Change at Northwestern University. I have 3 main goals I hope to achieve:
First, I intend to deepen my knowledge and practice of Organization Development (OD) in service of....
- Myself... I wish to learn more about myself, to clarify my own philosophy and style of leadership. To learn how to work more effectively in teams. To be clear about what gifts I bring to a team and how I can contribute to the effectiveness of the team.
- CSC and the public service... I want to equip myself with the knowledge and skills that will help me support the Civil Service College (CSC) and our mission and vision. As a (pretty) long-time member of the public service (a total of 12 years this October! Woot!), I also want to return to Singapore better able to support the public service in our organizational efforts to deliver good policies and services to citizens.
- The community...I want to be able to help non-profit organizations, specifically Muslim organizations in Singapore that need OD support and interventions. Why? I think that the safety and security of my children's future lies in the ability for Singapore to maintain, or even improve, the quality of racial and religious tolerance and understanding that currently exists. Given the way our social- programs are structured, Malay Muslim organizations, including the mosques, play a critical role in engaging Muslim youth, providing social, education and financial assistance. I would like to be able to support these organizations, so that they can be effective in what they do and hopefully reduce the likelihood of disenfranchised Muslim youths Singaporean.
Second, I hope to spend quality time with my husband and children in a way that will...
- Strengthen our marital bonds. To discover how we can better support and love each other as we face new challenges. To renew our trust in each other, and to re-discover the comforts of companionship that led us towards each other in the very beginning.
- Nurture the relationship between my children and I, in way that helps us better communicate, share our experiences and seek comfort, support and help from each other.
- Nurture my children's independence, sense of adventure and curiosity for cultures, different from our own.
Finally, to seek and nurture friendships and community.
I'd like to make friends, not just from the US, but from around the world. I would also like to nurture
the friendships and kinship ties that we have in Singapore. I want my children to learn that family and friendship is a connection that transcends physical distance, that our family and friendship ties can be just as strong even though we are on the other side of the world. All it takes is an effort to stay connected.
I know I can do it, I just have to return to this list to remind myself of what I have set out to do during my time here. Check in and recalibrate to ensure I'm on track. It's important that I focus, because these 2 years will fly by. And if I'm not careful, the 2 years will end, I have a degree scroll in hand, but have I really made the most of the time and opportunity that has been gifted me here? I am not going to regret that I didn't make the most of this privilege and opportunity I have been accorded.
Wish me luck, better yet- help me out and check in on me once in a while, will you?