As I re-read though the slides for this lecture, I am slightly amazed at the difference in what it means to me at this point in the class, versus the first time I read it. Initially, I thought, "I am going to use this first set of slides to help identify impulsive behaviors that caused added stress and frustration in previous classes and use them to motivate me to mend my fine-tuned procrastination skills!" What was the result? I did exactly that, I identified that last semester I was more focused on my current career (taking work home with me, spending longer hours at work, etc) than completing my coursework in a manageable, timely fashion. After that, I realized that I had a to-do list the length of my arm and stowed my school work, and began to chip away at my other tasks. I was successful at work, completing yearly associate evaluations ahead of schedule, and receiving a very positive evaluation in my quarterly touch base with my own boss. I felt great in the moment, but, the joy of success in the workplace was soon overshadowed by the fact that I was neglecting my educational commitments. I reasoned with myself that I need to be successful in my work to continue to be able to fund an education that will yield an opportunity to shift careers from one that constantly wins in the work-life balance competition, to one that may provide me with deeper satisfaction and opportunity to expend my energy in a more balanced manner..
Yet, here I am, down to the wire, looking back at the rewards I've gained in the last month, and comparing the feelings between the two. Having always been a diligent student with unwavering work-ethic, I find that I may have put myself in the position to accept a smaller, more immediate reward in a few, sincere, "Thank you's" from my boss, peers, and customers; in lieu of the greatest reward of all, completing my coursework in a way that will enable me to finally complete my degree after just under 10 years of setbacks. The greatest lesson I've taken away from this particular lecture is that my day-to-day actions have been a crisp example of Howard Rachlin's Primrose Path. Also, I am certain that on more than one occasion, I have used some very circular reasoning in modeling an everyday version of the Primrose Path.