Lately readers I have been having a recurring conversation with a few friends of mine and after some thought I have decided the topic of conversation is probably a relatively new one.
A good friend of mine recently wrote a blog entry (http://youandi365.blogspot.com/) about the disillusionment of what we think will happen upon graduation (that we will walk into a cushy job with copious amounts of perks and respect…and a corner office) and what actually happens (a road paved with months of self-doubt, confusion and endless ego-bruising job application submissions/interviews at the end of which lies a decent job with minimal perks, stability and pay).
This blog entry coincided perfectly with a recurring conversation that has popped up in my life over the last little while. A few of my friends are now in jobs that they worked extremely hard to get into after graduation. A few of them are even sitting in the job after the job after the job they got after graduating. However, they all seem to be lacking in the contentment area. It seems as though our generation has this new concept, that I don’t believe our parents (and certainly not our grandparents) ever thought of, the idea of deriving one’s happiness SOLELY from one’s work.
Now I would like to remind all of my friends – we are young and as Laragh (youandi365) stated, we are “in transition”. Simply because we have all found ourselves in roles that we relate to being “adults” (perhaps you have a mortgage, RRSP, TFSA, life insurance…or all of the above) we expect that we should all be settled in our identity and in turn that we should stop growing as individuals. I do not believe this is the case. I believe we must remember that a) not all of one’s contentment can be drawn from a single source (not a friend, a boyfriend, a hobby…or a job); b) where you are now as an “adult” does not necessarily predict where you will always be and c) as harsh as this sounds…not everyone can be happy at work.
I do not mean to say that everyone should dread getting up in the morning, simply that our generation has this idea that everyone in life should work only at what they love and not settle for less. I hate to break it to you guys….society doesn’t work like that. Yes, some people will be so lucky…but the other jobs must be done as well. Not every societal role will fill a deep engrained passion…but perhaps you can find something else that will.
Words of wisdom from my Father: “Work isn’t always what you love. Work is what ENABLES you to do what you love.”
So I know my posts are generally pretty light-hearted and don’t worry folks, this one won’t get too dark. However, lately I have not been able to shake the feeling that the days are behind me of big dreams and picturing giant career success for myself. Now I know I’m still basically a fetus…I’m not even past a quarter of a century yet…but I can’t help but feel that if I was going to have achieved massive levels of success it would have happened by now, or in the very least I should feel confident that I am walking the path that leads to greatness. I am not confident in this, in fact lately I’ve felt lost and pretty much like I suck at life.
I mean I did everything you’re “supposed” to do – I did (relatively) well in school, followed up my undergrad with a heavy dose of grad school and throughout both of those I worked summer jobs that were supposed to create connections and business relationships…I even did an unpaid internship throughout my grad degree and volunteered with a Political Party. So I followed all the appropriate steps, was a great employee/student and always took the responsible route….so why then do I find myself in this state of “okay-ness”, rather than greatness?
Now…I don’t want you to think this is too much of a sob story – I am lucky enough to have a job at all, let alone a job that gives me paid sick leave, great benefits, and 3 weeks vacation/year. However, Im just left wondering if this is it? and if so, what came of all of my hard work, career drive and ambition? Is this cubicle what I was driving at this whole time? If so….I wish someone had warned me. I might have lived it up a little more on the journey here.
I apologize for the quarter life crisis vent…Ill be more positive and upbeat tomorrow…after all I had a test for one job competition this week and an interview for another…fingers crossed 🙂
Well for all of you who don’t know D. and I are both sitting comfortably within the early-mid twenty age bracket. However, this doesn’t stop either of us from having mini breakdowns every now and then in terms of where our life is going/ that we haven’t done anything with our lives… (please do not try to remind me that there haven’t been many years in my life – as of yet – to do much with). I mean, let’s be honest the first 16-18 years are throw aways for most people (aside from those genius babies). I don’t even think twenty four year old me would be friends with seventeen year old me if we met on the street. However, knowing this does not stop me from having mini anxiety attacks when I take a moment to think of all the things I want to do – help people, change the world for the better, or at the very least run a small country – and the few things I have accomplished to date.
If I could cha-a-a-nge the world...
This past week I had yet another panic attack about how I’m not where I thought I would be if you asked me five years ago…so, as much as I’ve been studying for the LSATs I plan to take this summer I am kicking it into high gear (not to mention I have made contact with a lawyer I really admire who works in Human Rights and we will be discussing my future plans sometime in the new year 😀 !!!!).
...I'm feeling a bit drowned in my attempts to buckle down...
However, there is one drawback to me actually starting to put some legitimate effort into my life plan…less time to read. This doesn’t mean I won’t be indulging in some anna karenina or the odd fitzgerald or hornby on cold days when all I want is to curl up under the covers with a book and hot chocolate. I just wanted to give you fare warning that my reading might slow down a little over the next few months….at least it should if I stick to my LSAT study plan, but we will see. I do intend to take advantage of the Christmas holidays (for me the 21st to the 28th…ps. i may be m.i.a during this period) and whip through the end of anna karenina and any books Santa leaves me under my tree. 🙂
Merry Christmas to all of the literary snobs and Dan Brown readers alike.
Wish me luck!!!