It’s what we’ve been told for most of our lives: dream big – and go for it.
From the moment we’re told this, we’re motivated to do just that. We give guitar or acting a try and imagine ourselves as the next Jimi Hendrix or Audrey Hepburn. Then we move onto other things – maybe what we really want to do is be a firefighter, or a doctor, or an author.
Whatever the case, our dreams always start the same: big, bold, and beautiful. But what they boil down to, what they lead to, is a path of further self-discovery that doesn’t end just with their pursuit.
After we flirt with fame and fortune, we learn of a world of other possibilities: fossils and forgotten civilizations to dig up, for example, or a power suit and a paycheck that, at times, look like the ultimate indicators of a successful life.
We continue to explore both our inner desires and the outside world. We pick up an afterschool job at Starbucks or Dollar Tree, take a yoga class or join a youth group, following wherever our path for identity may lead us, even if just for the short term.
It’s important to remember that life is a journey. What we do today may not be what we do tomorrow; what we strive for and what we achieve aren’t always going to match up, at least not as quickly as we’d like to imagine.
For us on staff at the Loquitur, we experience this firsthand. As newspaper editors, we’re faced with deadline after deadline. Our positions wire us to expect things as soon as possible, if not a week in advance.
The constant deadlines that we face are found all over in life, from the midterm paper that’s due in 15 minutes, to the eBay auction ending at the same time which is preventing us from finishing it.
We live in a world that prides itself on achievement. “Going the extra mile” quickly turns into an obstacle course more fit for a triathlon.
But is that how life should really be lived? Should we push ourselves to the brink of madness just to “keep up” with our peers, with our fellow competitors?
We at the Loquitur continually remind ourselves to relax, to take a step back and take in the scenery. We recommend you do the same. It’s more easily said than done, but we believe it’s something that everyone should strive for.
This week’s stories on the job market for many of our majors at Cabrini reflects our collective need to slacken the reins of our lives that we hold onto with a deathly grip. We need to live up to the mantra that calls us simply to “go with the flow.”
Sometimes it takes a few months to get the job we’re after, or even a few years to get where we want to be in life. We may have to settle for less pay, or more busywork, before we can get to the heart of our dreams. Everyone has to do this. Don’t think it’s beneath you. Don’t look to it as settling; it’s just a part of the journey.
You can’t expect to be the next Jennifer Lawrence – heck, even she tripped up the steps as she accepted her Emmy!
Our humanity, our flaws, are more important than complete perfection. We’re remembered more by our quirks and uniqueness than our ability to conform to the status quo, after all, right?
Even after you read this week’s stories and see the many pitfalls that your journey may hold, we do encourage you to still shoot for your dreams.
Just don’t get lost in the glitz and glam and forget who you are, and what really matters.
It’s less about receiving the Emmy and more about deserving it – about working hard, even without the recognition that we all crave.