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EJ just pinned the tail on my life

January 17, 2009

The Visitors Center from outside

The Visitors Center from outside

My boss at the Visitors Center, I call him “EJ,” is probably the closest thing I have to a true mentor in my life, and there are times when he just seems to know what’s going on around him. He’s incredibly in tune with the college student psyche — possibly because he directed freshman orientation for 13 years and now heads up the VC — and his post from yesterday pretty much illustrated my life and my current decision mindset exactly. I won’t ruin his thunder by copying the whole post here, but you can go check out his post on his blog. I will, however, pull some of the finer points and quotes out for some analysis.

Very few [college students], though, seem to persist in the pursuit of an answer that is truly meaningful to them. They are influenced by others – well-meaning parents, teachers, and peers – who guide them toward a practical, traditional response. So, they get a job doing something that doesn’t genuinely excite them, assuming maybe they’ll get back to that big question soon after they get settled in a normal, adult life.

That’s my life exactly. I’m trying my very hardest to hold out for an offer or an opportunity that genuinely excites me, really lights a fire and motivates me to accomplish something, but it’s so difficult. It’s even more difficult with the very real pressures of this economy, believe me. I’ve always had a very practical, rational thinking process, but I’m almost abandoning that recently. I want to be fulfilled. And I don’t want to have to wait for the magical age of 65 either.

I know we Generation Yers are all about instant gratification — and most other generations can’t understand why — but I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it, in this case especially. No matter what you do in life, it’s going to have a much larger and more effective impact if it’s something you love to do. If it is that passion that I’ve talked about pretty often. It’s just difficult to play the waiting game when everyone around is jumping ship. And what’s the appeal of a “normal, adult life” anyway? Sounds boring, monotonous and unappealing. And most of all, it sounds like it doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. Gen Yers want to have a measurable, beneficial impact (check out this article, which outlines all of these points beautifully, especially #5).

Start doing at least what you think you love, even if it’s on your own time or knowing that it will only be a hobby. Take action and start acting like you are who you want to be, even if you’re not really sure who that it is yet.


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