When you’re coming up to your 20s and you’re a senior in college (just like me), the question of where to go from here really starts bothering you more. People and the media like to convince us that our 20s is the age where we go around really trying to find ourselves, and figuring out what directions we want to take. It’s quite interesting to note, that the 20s may be the decade of our lives where we truly feel the chaotic relationship of trying to figure out who we are, and having to conform just to survive. On the one hand, you want to do certain things; on the other hand, there is pressure to work immediately, in order to survive in society.
Not to say that the other decades don’t quite feel this, but I feel the 20s is the decade where it really has an impact because it feels like it might actually be the first time we’re feeling the big overhead question everyone always wants the answer to: What should I do (with my life)?
It’s always bothering when people seem to have their life figured out. They’ve got plans for what they’ll do after school, where they’ll work, when they’ll marry, or have kids. And here you are having a million thoughts all at once about what your plans for that day should be and whether or not that’ll have a large impact on your future, or at least the one you want. They seem to have their life figured out, but the thing is: they don’t. Or at least, they don’t really know what they’ll know be doing either. They just know what they want to do. They have goals.
We all have goals; some people are just better at making them happen.
The truth is: we’re all just stranded in the middle of a huge ocean, trying to find our way to shore. It takes time to build a map, and it might take even longer to follow it. And nowadays, it’s hard to try and find yourself when you have to prioritize keeping yourself afloat first. But some people find their island easily, and others, well they keep swimming.
There’s nothing wrong with not having figured things out yet. They say when one door closes, another one opens, but what they don’t tell you is that a hundred doors could open, and you’re left trying to figure out which one is worth stepping into. But the trick is to try them all. To keep going, keep looking, keep learning. You have to draw the map first, before you can follow it.
You have to allow yourself the chance to explore the world around you, and to allow yourself to do so at your own pace. Maybe it’s difficult to devote all your time to self-discovery because you’ll have jobs that you’d have to tend to; don’t rush it. Allow yourself to experience life’s natural unfolding, and be open to see it for all that it can be.
And maybe by now you’ve figured it all out, and that’s great. But the truth is you’ve only just barely stepped into the door, just barely drew your map, and just barely swam the ocean. There’s still a long way to go.
And if you still feel lost, well that’s okay too.