Lessons 2023

Maria Lasprilla
3 min readDec 16, 2023

With my hands, I have learned to carve a wooden spoon. Only one, though. I expect to carve a couple more in the months ahead. I do not aim to become an expert at it. Crafts and activities which attract me and in which I am not skillful help me be fully present. It is meditative. Keeping a beginners mind serves me bring myself to the present when I struggle doing it without guidance.

In writing, I have learned to compose prompts in DALL.E to recreate my surroundings as an exercise in paying attention to detail. Though at this point I’ve stopped because I got sicken by the eery characteristic look of most AI generated images. Not planning to come back to it any time soon.

I have also learned to journal with the goal of capturing the good, the gratitude, the beauty in my life. I have journaled since my teens, with interrupted periods. And though since 2018 I have been doing it almost non-stop, only this year did I realize that the majority of my writing was a way of venting, grieving and, in general, of managing strong emotions on the negative side of the spectrum. My only positive or neutral writing had been for work or for publication. I am learning to write the positive just for myself, and I am loving the feeling I get from rereading about a positive experience I had or a long list of 40 things that give me a cozy feeling.

I am learning to ask for help and to reject offers that don’t serve me. It has been difficult to admit that I am not good at asking for assistance when I need it, nor at saying no when I should. I’m only great at saying no at work. I am great at being myself in personal and professional settings. But I have also learned that I can be rude when I speak to myself in my head, and I can feel embarrassed if I need a hand. I might say yes to a request for help even at the expense of draining myself. This year I have spent 7 wonderful sessions with a career coach who guided me in discovering some of these traits about myself, including that list of 40 things which make me feel good. I had touched the tip of the iceberg through self reflection in the last couple of years, but it took me a while to recognize that I needed support in getting to know myself better. This has been the most meta-conscious learning of all, that I had to call for help to help myself! 🤯 It is still work in progress, but like the game The Mind I have reached level 2: Empathie augmentée, but empathy for myself, first of all. There are still another 10 levels to go!

There’s so much more I have learned this year, but I am also learning to keep things short. Say less, take in more.

Happy Saturday,
Maria 🌺

Originally published at https://marialasprilla.wordpress.com on December 16, 2023.

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Maria Lasprilla

Product Management, Personal Growth, Leadership. Living The Good Life.