As many of you may know I am currently finishing my Masters of Public Administration at the University of Utah. This semester I’m enrolled in a class that incorporates service learning into the curriculum. For those of you that aren’t familiar with this term, service learning is a learning strategy that integrates community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience. As part of the course requirements are three service learning reflection assignments. These assignments essentially allow us to reflect on our experiences and reflect on them critically. It’s a way to step back, look holistically, force your self to reflect, and if needed…re-evaluate.
I bring this up because I recently went through this process at CAP Utah. I had found myself so caught up in the immediate that the important was getting lost. So I took a day and took a step back from my work, looked at my job holistically, and forced myself to reflect on the work I was doing as CAP Utah’s Policy Analyst.
So what did I find? Essentially, I found what I expected. I spent far too much time on what came to my desk that day, and I was loosing what I filed away yesterday. I was invigorated after this. I put my obsessive-compulsive hat on and went to work. I organized all my assignments into three categories. Those three categories were then assigned a day of the week. I pulled out the color coordination, and presto a better-structured workweek.
We all hear this from our colleagues or even from our own mouths, “I need to get more organized.” So I encourage everyone to stop talking and start doing. Give yourself your own service learning reflection assignment, and don’t forget to put a due date on it. Put yourself back into school mode, which for many of us is cramming before the day the assignment is due, but just get it done!