I’m still in college. But boy, oh boy, has it taught me lots!
I went through high school absolutely sure of how my future would play out. And it’s not like there was a general idea, there was a whole plan, a whole list of things that I wanted to do – that “I will do.” Naïve, I know.
Then I started college and nothing went as planned – except for taking a math class in the first semester.
From that frustration, this is what I learned:
- Planning ahead isn’t always the best plan. My academic years were all perfectly laid out and I always looked for something to do on the school breaks. Naturally, my career was already planned out – obviously, duh. And consequently, I was so set on finishing a molecular biology major, in exactly four years, at a really good school where I’d have the experience of a lifetime.
Perhaps these high expectations are at fault for my confusion when college started… Things aren’t always so perfect. Of course, they can be if you’re very determined, which I was. But some things get in the way of that focus, and I unconsciously chose to let it.
- Patience truly is a virtue. As a result from my confusion at the plans falling at the seams right in front of me, I found out that I am a very impatient individual. But what I have learned in these past two years is that I can’t be. And therefore, I stop myself every time I get anxious for the future. Everything happens for a reason (so yes, there is a reason for that unsettling feeling to keep coming back – though I have no idea what that reason is!).
- Don’t settle. In the midst of my confusion, I also thought of settling for anything – “I’ll go wherever, I’ll do whatever, I just want to get it done.” I’ve learned that this mindset doesn’t get me anywhere, except for more indecision and confusion. So I’m being picky now! When it comes to an education, I want to do what will lead me to a job that makes me happy.
The main reason why I wrote this today is because I’m having one of those crazy days again. Sometimes, when all decisions are good ones, it’s hard to say which is “the right one.” And I struggle with that more than it comes across!
Bottom line is that I learned not to plan so far ahead and to have patience not to settle. The right thing – the right major, the right school, the right club, the right job, the right internship, the right class – will come along if you keep looking. And anyhow, a few hit-and-miss’s never hurt anyone, right?
Things fall in place, I promise. Just look at the opportunities!
So don’t worry, and enjoy the crazy College Ride (a reminder that is totally for myself too!).