“What’s next?” “What is your plan?” “What do you want to do with your life?” These questions are asked in many different ways amidst receiving countless job opportunities family and friends send your way, with your heart skipping a beat at each notification because, quite frankly, you are not sure where to begin. I know this first hand because I have experienced it.
Image courtesy of Iridescent Women
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” is a question that adults ask children and listen to them with great interest as their imaginations run wild. When you get to adulthood and are done with college, most people don’t want to hear your dreams. People believe you should have figured out life by then. Yet we get much information thrown at us from social media telling us to dream big.
After I graduated from college, I was clueless. I wasn’t getting any job opportunities in the field I studied, and I felt like a failure. I hated going to certain gatherings with friends because when outsiders asked what I did for a living, I was scared to respond—nothing yet and my father was still supporting me. I knew I loved kids. Was I to start a daycare? I wasn’t sure. I took an opportunity to work as a nanny for a couple of months while I figured out what I wanted to do.
My dreams were so big and vast, and they were not matching up with my reality. There were days I went to bed sad. There were days I cried. There were days I wished I had studied something else in college. But I couldn’t go back in time to change anything. In that time, I discovered my gift: writing. I put pen to paper and started writing articles, stories, and other inspirations, which led me to start my website. As I grew in my craft, I was drawn toward different opportunities, some of which didn’t bring in any money. Still, I treated my art as my job. Being from an African home (I was born in Nigeria), it is not enough to find your passion. If that passion isn’t bringing in money, “it is a hobby, boo boo”, they’ll tell you.
The questions kept coming. “What next?” “Aren’t you applying for jobs?” “Don’t you want to work?” I woke up each day with job applications from my dad. What he was sending me and what I wanted to do were on opposite sides of the spectrum. I kept at my craft for one year and eventually applied for an opportunity I saw online, which landed me my first official paying gig in writing. I was so excited! I had finally found a job in a field that I enjoy. The one year I used for building my craft served as training ground for me. I am glad to have landed an opportunity I believe in, even if it took me years to get there.
If you are at the point in life where you are done with college and are under immense pressure from family, friends, and society, don’t give in. I know it can be tough. I know it can do a number on your psyche and self-esteem, but don’t worry too much about it. Take your time, search within, and ask yourself what you were put on this planet to do. Figure out what your strengths are, work within that sphere, and you will find it—your why, your purpose, your mission.
Not everyone is on the same timeline. Some people may get jobs at age 21 as soon as they are done with college and be laid off at 27, unable to pick themselves back up quickly. Others may be jobless till 27 (or 30, like me) and then land the job or career of your dreams. Don’t give in to societal pressure; as long as you discover what it is you are supposed to be doing and do it, there will be no stopping you! And about my love for kids? I still plan on working with them in the future. God never puts any desire in your heart that He doesn’t want to use for His glory.
Originally Written for iridescentwomen.com
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About The Author: Evi Idoghor is a Christian, writer and content creator on Letstalknationblog.com. She is a chemical engineering graduate from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Consumed by her love for writing and desire to effect change, she launched her online platform––Let’s Talk Nation––to tap into her creativity and start meaningful conversations that would make a difference around the world.
Most of her writing has been influenced by her time spent in America, where she lived for about 11 years. Also, she lived in Nigeria and South Korea and currently loves traveling the world while learning about other fascinating cultures. You can find her on all social media platforms with @eviidoghor.