Okay, I confess. I’m 20 years old, I have a Bachelor’s degree, and I still don’t know what career I want. I am currently taking a year off from study to explore my interests and potential career paths. It is a year full of uncertainty.
But is it necessary to label this a confession? What am I guilty of?
Sometimes I give myself a hard time for taking a year off. Am I just being lazy; listless towards my future? All my friends seem to know what career they’d like, and most have launched into post graduate degrees. However, I believe this sort of comparison is a dangerous game to play.
Everyone faces uncertainty, and for me, this ‘gap’ year is the right decision.
I find ‘gap’ year to be an interesting term. Apart from having a ‘gap’ from uni, it is in every other way the opposite of a ‘gap’ year. I have been learning deeply this year and using it as a means of personal growth. I am gaining experience in different areas and plan to meet with people I admire to learn about their journey and career.
Each day my goal is to stretch a little farther outside of my comfort zone. Which some days is a lot easier than others.
Sometimes, however I feel that by being open to new opportunities and experiences, my interests and ideas become broader and broader; less clear. This is yet another manifestation of uncertainty, teaching me to be comfortable with being uncomfortable.
Attitude is everything. By leaping to worry when faced with risk and uncertainty you are closing doors for yourself, and missing an opportunity to enjoy the journey, even the parts we wish we didn’t have to experience. Now don’t get me wrong, being okay with not knowing what the future holds is something I am still working on, but it’s something we all have to deal with for the entirety of our lives. This is why I am so grateful that I have this year not only to build my capacity and explore passions, but to learn how to embrace and accept uncertainty in my life.
It’s okay to not know what’s around the corner. It’s okay not to know what you want to be around the corner. As long as you’re investing energy into yourself; gaining experience, knowledge, and reflecting (while maintaining a healthy balance) you’re okay. In fact, you’re better than okay, you’re being courageous.
Remember. Nobody is immune to uncertainty.
Written by Maddie Ford.
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