When I was 5 years old, I said: “I’m going to be a model,” then when I only reached 5’4 and failed to develop any hips, I was heartbroken.
When I was 12, I said “I’m going to go to Harvard and marry rich”. Well Harvard also broke my heart, and I’ve decided no man is ever going to break my heart again so I’ll just earn my own money.
The point is that most of the major resolutions I’ve had have not come through.
None of us are cavemen with life expectancy of 20, which means all that extra time on our hands changes us, and our dreams, hopes and beliefs.
Take me as an example. Three years ago I hadn’t even heard of the university I currently attend, I thought my major was a complete joke, and I patronized my friends for being dorks for watching Game of Thrones on Saturday nights. I’ve had summer plans fall through weeks before the end of the semester, and I’ve had too many curveballs thrown at me count.
What I’ve learned from all of this is that life is so incredibly unpredictable that where you’ll be in 5 years is probably going to be different than you’re expecting today. What so many of us seem to do, including myself, is set our minds to a certain ideal of the near or far future. We make goals to reach that vision, and we work hard to achieve it.
The issue with this is that we don’t take into account ourselves. We change! Our personalities are molded by experiences and knowledge, so as we get older we gain new experiences and we learn so much more. So it’s expected that our dreams will change too! The five year old me wanted to be a model and the 12 year old me a trophy wife, today I’m saying I’ll be a corporate lawyer. In 10 years I might be saying I want to quit it all and run off with a sexy Italian!
The people we meet and the things we see, the books we read and the places we travel, all have so much influence on us that it’s impossible to accurately predict our future. This is why we should stop writing our dreams in stone, because if they start to change, it’s so much more stressful and difficult to let go of those old dreams and accept the new ones.
What we should do instead is definitely have an idea of where we want to go in our lives but also keep an open mind. By always living with the you today rather than the you from three years ago, you’ll be living true to yourself and won’t be trying to live out dreams that no longer fit your present character. So don’t stress so much about knowing every little detail of your life 20 years into the future, instead just go with the flow and be open to life’s little surprises along the way!