AT last the day big day had arrived. I’d picked my outfit, carefully chosen my shoes and had taken extra time over my hair and makeup. As I got into the car to drive to Southampton University to hand in my PGCE submission folder, full to bursting with evidence of my 10-month training ordeal, I waited for the exhilaration to hit me... but I felt nothing.

I’d achieved my goal, fulfilled my lifelong ambition to become a teacher. But what now? Suddenly the thought of a summer with no structure, no suppression of feelings nor forcing myself to carry on regardless, seemed disconcertingly alien.

Teachers talk of the importance of transitions in lessons as they guide students from one learning point to another. But in real life, transitions can be rather uncomfortable.

“What’s wrong, Amy?” I asked the naughtiest Year 11 girl in the school who was sitting on the stairs outside the staffroom in floods of tears. “Next week is my last week at school,” she sobbed. “But you hate school!” I said helpfully, “I know I do Miss, but I don’t want to leave…”

Change is the one constant in life. Buddhists believe that when you stop trying to grasp, own, and control the world around you, you give it the freedom to fulfil you without the power to destroy you. However, research has shown that having at least some sense of control over our lives is essential. People who feel in control report better health, fewer aches and pains, recover faster from illnesses and live longer.

Having a sense of control is so important that if we don’t have it, we make it up. When times are tough, people turn to unlikely sources to help them regain it —join authoritarian religions, buy bigger dogs, watch marvel blockbusters and cut their hair.

To recover some semblance of management, my post-course life has become a series of categorised to-do lists. Beautiful in their simplicity, I work out what needs to be done, in what order, write down the tasks, do them, and one-by-one cross them off.

My lists dampen my anxiety about the chaos of life, give structure to my time and at the end of the day are proof of what I have achieved - unlike a PGCE, there are no certificates available for many of these jobs.

In ‘The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’ Stephen Covey talks of the importance of limiting our efforts to things we can actually influence.

We can fret that Donald Trump had ‘create chaos at the G7 summit’ on his to-do list or worry that Teresa May appears not to have one. However, there is nothing we can do to change these things and spending undue time ruminating over them is a waste.

With a satisfied smile, I close my laptop; article done. Another one checked off the list.