Is there a topic that you're interested in? Something you're curious about and could stand to take a class on? If there's a topic that interests you, I'd encourage you to learn more about it. Last April when I went up to DC during The Year of Travel, I had a session with my mentor and coach Kimberly Wilson. She planted a seed by mentioning that she was taking a Positive Psychology Certification course through the Flourishing Center and that maybe I'd enjoy it too?
A little background on me is that I've always loved the study and science of psychology, I think it's because my high school psychology teacher Mr. Clark did such a great job of introducing it. It's the only thing I've ever studied seriously that hasn't felt like work. I loved it so much it was my major in college. I didn't pursue it after college because I wasn't ready for graduate school and I didn't want to be a counselor who just did "talk therapy" all day with patients. I didn't know then that there was a different way (turns out there are lots of alternatives).
When Kimberly suggested this course I was more than curious, positive psychology "hmmm", I thought. Something in my gut was telling me to do this. I'm not someone who needs a lot of information to move forward. I know this wouldn't work for most people but for me, it works. I checked out the flourishing center, I looked to make sure I could make the weekends work, registered for the payment plan and enrolled. This is how I do most things. Sometimes it doesn't work out, but for the majority of things it does and luckily for me, this one worked out very well.
Positive psychology is about the study of how to help people flourish. It's about how individuals can move north of neutral to flourish and excel in life and relationships. I've never been more enthralled with an area of study. In fact, I love it so much when I figure out how to pay for it I'm going to apply to UPenn for their Masters of Applied Positive Psychology distance learning program (they have the only program in the U.S). Since October I've been trekking up to DC once a month for a weekend-long class and spending every Tuesday night on a zoom video with my classmates learning the extra material. This course was 240 hours and it was a lot of work.
I'm telling you all of this because I think learning is one of the most important things we can do for ourselves. I was curious about this topic and I was willing to make the financial investment and the time investment for myself. I think that so many people want to figure out how to get work to pay for something or don't purse extra learning because they don't see how they will be financially rewarded for it, but that misses the point. An investment in learning (of any kind), an investment in educating yourself in what you're interested in is more wealth in the bank than cash because no-one can ever take this knowledge away from me. I'd also argue that when you pay for the learning yourself you also value it more but that's a post for another day. This is by far one of the best investments I've ever made in myself.
Turns out by following what I'm passionate about I will be able to apply it to my work. The material I learned will be an integral part of a coaching program that I'm building out for next year. I can share this content now not just because I'm insanely passionate about it, but because I've studied it and applied it to my own life.
If money were no object what would you study? An art class, a dance class, math class? What gets your creative juices flowing?