Sunday, January 26, 2014

Find Your Life Calling

A question I used to dread being asked was one we are all too familiar with growing up and sometimes still find ourselves struggling with. What do you want to do? It sounds so simple, like it is something as easy as a want. An impulse we find ourselves indulging in like wanting a drink of water. But a topic could never be more not simple. After all our future does not ride on simply doing what we want to do but is dependent on various factors that need to be considered. Do I want to be a poor street peddling musician that is pursuing passion or a wealthy surgeon sacrificing time for money? Do I even have what it takes to do the job, the ability to fuse words into a relateable message that connects deep with the audience as a blogger? We ask ourselves these impossible questions and find ourselves with no answer to the original, what do you want to do. Sometimes the answer is more simple then we had previously imagined.

Asking ourselves what we want to do as a career is very similar to what we want to eat. Deciding what to eat for dinner can sometimes be a long drawn process which involves deciding between multiple possibilities that all sound too delicious to compare. Eventually you get too hungry and fed up with the lack of 'making moves' realizing you need to eat something. The simple act of choosing the macaroni over the pizza is all it takes to satisfy your hunger. Sure you might regret not picking the other option but very rarely will you lose sleep over the ordeal. After all, you can always eat the pizza another time. The same process applies to picking a career. We often find ourselves deciding between multiple professions and find ourselves in a deadlock between teacher, nurse, architect and every other job we can see ourselves doing. We starve ourselves from doing what we want because we want to do it all. Very often, it simply takes an act of commitment by pursuing one option. Just as the pizza is always an open option, you can always pursue another career if you find yourself unsatisfied. It is obviously much more work then I make it out to be but that is a topic for another time. The point is to pick something and stick with it and that if it does not work out there will always be other options. 

Start small and start somewhere. For me it started with a journal which translated into this blog. I started to take more steps down a path I never imagined myself being on and it has been quite rewarding. Not to say this will be my career, but who knows where it will take me. Whatever your interest is no matter how small it is, expand on it and find new ways to make it grow. If you don't know how to write, then take a writing class. Don't know how to make a blog, become friends with a graphic designer. There is nothing better than childish excitement at planting a seed and watching it grow. 

By this point you probably think I am some hopeless optimist ignorant to the real world. I completely agree with you. There are insurmountable circumstances that prevent us from simply choosing a career and I cannot foresee them all but I will try to address the main ones that I find prevalent being money and fear. 

Many times our options are limited by finances. Would we ever buy a meal that we could not afford? Attending a university that is too expensive holds the same idea. There are ways around this such as scholarships, fundraising, working, and any other outside-the-box scheme you can think of. I truly believe if we want something bad enough we will find ways to achieve it, and if not we will have gained an incredible experience in the process of trying. Even a man with no legs can fulfill his dream to run with prosthetics. 

Imagine you are a girl at dinner deciding to settle for a salad instead of the rack of barbecue ribs because you don't want your date to think you are some grotesque human being that actually enjoys real food. Don't let the fear of what others may think about your work stop you from doing what you want and how you want to do it. Naysayers will always bring you down and tell you that you don't have what it takes to become an astronaut and walk on the moon. They will convince you that these obstacles are mountains instead of hurdles but even mountains can be climbed

Perhaps you are guilty of staring at your menu as the waiter comes around for the third time and you are still not ready to order. You may be wondering if a certain dish will be the right choice but don't let the fear of regret hold you back from choosing a career. 

If a certain dish on the menu catches your eye that you have never tried before then I say go for it. You will never know how a thing tastes until you have tried it first. This same concept applies to career-searching. Take classes, volunteer, work at internships. Don't just put it in your mouth and spit it out, taste it first and give it a chance. 

Choosing what we want to do is sometimes as simple as doing it. If we are faced with an obstacle, overcome it. It will always be in the way holding us back until we find a way around it. Do not be afraid to try new things. Explore, fail, pick yourself up and as Nike would say, just do it.

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