Seeing people move on, and do great things has been very pressurizing for me. I am one year away from graduating. I am constantly bombarded with questions and thoughts of what’s next? Seeing people move on, and do great things has been very pressurizing for me. I’m in this weird limbo where I find myself dodging my family members’ prying questions and obsessively stalking potential opportunities on LinkedIn.
These moments are served with the side of anxiety.
I am doubting myself.
Will I be able to do it?
What if I couldn’t?
All these thoughts and what if’s make me anxious. I feel very lost. Before this, I always knew what was next, and what I won’t do, but now I dont know what’s next. I dont like knowing what’s going to happen.This uncertainty has caused me a lot of trouble. Consciously and unconsciously I tried to keep looking for constants to instill a sense of comfort. Isn’t that what we do?
Recently, I had a conversation with my professor Richard. I always found comfort in having a conversation with him. Over the past 6 months, we had a couple of conversations. The last time I spoke to him, I was just done with my year 3 and started the process of mapping my next few years. Richard always likes to impart his Richard-ism, and this time it helped me with my anxiety. Here are a few things I recollect from our last conversation;
- It’s okay to take one step at a time
- If there is nothing you can do to change it, dont cry over it
- Smile more
- It’s alright to not have everything figured out, I am after all only 20
It made me realize, it’s okay if the majority of my twenties will be spent in a rabbit hole never knowing which way to take. It doesn’t matter how I planned it or envisioned it. I’m learning, ever so slowly, not to fight so hard against the unknown. I’m learning it’s okay not to have everything figured out. I’m learning that we’re all making it up as we go. I am learning to let timing also work few things out.
I dont have to figure it out tomorrow, not even the next week. There is no point in draining my energy and thinking about it. All I can do is take one step at a time and move in a direction that feels right. There is no shame in being afraid. Hell, we’re all afraid. What you’ve got to do is figure out what you’re afraid of.
It’s normal for us to hold on to what we want. We should be able to celebrate all our small achievements too. There are moments in our lives when we find ourselves at a crossroads, afraid, confused, without a roadmap. We fall into the temptation of making plans, but isn’t it wiser to appreciate and love the easiest dismissed time; the day already in hand.
Currently, I am still learning what interests me and as I do, I am learning to pursue my interests. Right now is the time I can try out different things. I want to keep making constant developments. I can experiment, fearlessly. After all, I am a work in progress.
None of this means that I am afraid. It just means I am ready to take on the next big challenge. Here are a few things I will keep in mind here onwards;
- Explore my passion, and pursue that
- Keep my eyes open for all the opportunities to explore my interests
- Take one day at a time
- Adapt to changes and I will be who I am meant to be
- Just keep going
I may not even have a ‘pla-’ yet, but I’d rather work on being more comfortable with not knowing what to do than agonize over the uncertainty that plagues me, much like it does every other twenty-something.