Report date
April 2023
Learning Log

The fellowship gave me the opportunity to reflect deeply on what my leadership and growth can look like. As someone who loves learning, new experiences and sees 'working' as a source of great joy, the fellowship gave me the space to incorporate physical, spiritual, emotional and intellectual self-care into my work and see it as a continuum of my leadership impact.  Seeing self-care as part of the work you are passionate about as a leader will take a paradigm shift in which you will reevaluate what being in service to others actually means.  As a fellow who chose the self-designed route, it meant that I continuously remind myself that I am enough, I know enough, I've done enough, and that taking time to reinvent myself as a more deeply grounded and present leader is a meaningful accomplishment.  In our modern day world of speed, I wanted to slow down and the fellowship gave me the space to do that.  I wanted to give myself the opportunity to be reflective,be mentored and find innovative ways to serve my community.  I realized that when we do this, we tap into our ability to be present leaders. Flexible, emotionally attuned to self and to others and grounded in self-knowledge and purpose.  I must admit that a huge opportunity like this will make you feel like you need to accomplish something big and constantly doubt yourself when you are taking it slow.  The fellowship is an opportunity for you to become the best version of yourself and many of us are going to need to do the inner work to believe that we are worthy of this investment.  During my fellowship, I found myself straying away from my self-care plan and getting back to the busy and fast world I know. I've been fortunate to have reflective therapy as part of my fellowship plan to keep me grounded in my purpose and to reevaluate my commitment to myself. Another experience I had was finding myself reevaluating what I actually wanted to do. I enrolled in a diploma program in Islamic Psychology that is quite unique and meaningful to my work.  I was yearning to explore tools that are grounded in our cultural and faith heritage and affirming of the diversity in my own Muslim community.  This program has been extremely enriching and I'm fortunate to be part of it.  I came into the fellowship thinking I knew what I wanted to do but my learning and experiences in the first year have invited some introspection and flexibility to reimagine the future of my community service.  Part of your leadership growth is staying open and flexible to explore new ideas and to accept that a route you may have chosen can be the same but look different than you thought.  I'm grateful for a fellowship opportunity that allows you to be in touch with the need to shift gear and accommodate your new direction.