Last weekend, my school organized a weekend retreat to a sports camp three hours north of Toronto. I’m in teacher’s college now at a small faculty. There aren’t too many people within the program, so the trip was organized to help us get to know each other and build a stronger community. It was a great experience! At first, I thought it would be a little bit cheesy because I’m not interested in activities which seem forced. I’m also not very interested in sports. But, I couldn’t believe just how much I was able to break out of my comfort zone, open myself up and do things that I never thought I would do.
First, I’d like to talk about getting out of my comfort zone, in terms of the sports and physical activities we did. By no means, am I a fit and active person. I don’t think that I’ve done any team sports since I played on the basketball team in the seventh grade. But last weekend, I decided that I would get involved in everything that I normally don’t do. This included activities like rock climbing, going on the ‘high ropes’ (a wooden jungle gym supported by beams fairly high off the ground), zip lining, canoeing, and kayaking. I had never done any of these things and a lot of them seemed really frightening at first. I also played a lot of group sports like basketball, soccer, and volleyball and had a great time! In the end, I felt really accomplished and alive.
Secondly, I opened up to a lot of my fellow student teachers and put myself on display. I shared my stories with them, shared my ideas, and even performed in front of them during a talent show. From a formerly shy person, I was impressed with how social I could be and how much everyone accepted me as I was! It was such a fun weekend. I met new friends and have picked up some new hobbies! I learned a lot about community building and how this community can influence your outlook on yourself and your goals.