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Student Life

The Pressure To Plan Your Perfect Future Is Normal

I have no idea where I'm going after college, but I guess nobody does.

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Anthony Tran

I love to have a plan for everything. I like to know what I'm doing today and a month from now. But we've all heard it time and time again; the future is unpredictable and uncertain, you can't worry about something so far away and (the absolute worst one) so many things could change between now and then.

But that's not a good enough answer for me.

I'm having what you might call a mid-college crisis. The anticipation and worry that plagues many college students is striking me. We all have that thing that can send us into a spiral with just a thought. Mine is the future. The elusive and mythical future that all people fear but reluctantly embrace. I'm struggling to embrace the future unknowns for what I think are pretty valid reasons.

Let me break down the situation for you.

For starters, I'm an English major. To non-English majors, and my mom, it might seem like I only have two options: be a teacher or an online proofreader. My situation isn't quite that grim. (No shade to teachers, you rock.) English majors can break into many different fields because possessing the ability to manipulate the English language is an invaluable skill in all sorts of careers. But I want to be a publisher.

Books have been the one thing I've consistently been obsessed with since I was little. I've had commitment issues to everything whether it be instruments, sports or hobbies, but no matter what I'm reading. There's nothing I love more than finding an amazing series and annoyingly raving about it to all my friends. It's my passion, and I need to at least explore it. My worst fear is being fifty with three kids and a mortgage and wondering what if. Sadly, in typical me fashion, publishing is a very limiting career.

To be in the publishing business, you have to either live in New York or London. For a woman who has only ever lived in Winter Park, Florida, that's an intense move. I don't want to leave my family, friends and the life I've built here. I also don't just have me to worry about. I have to consider my long-term boyfriend.

I know, I know. All adults are shaking their head and saying, "you know when I was your age I thought I was going to marry him too."

I get that. But also when you've been dating the same person for what feels like ten million years, you have to consider them in big decisions like moving all the way to New York City.

Also, publishing is an excellent industry, but it's hard to wrap my mind around living with a $40,000 salary in one of the most expensive cities in the world. Especially when I could stay here with my loved ones and someday take over my family's business. It's hard to decide between your unpredictable, scary passion and a steady career.

I just don't want to make a mistake or have any regrets. I'm aware that that is impossible, but as a planner, it's hard for me to ignore that urge to plan the perfect life. All full-grown adults I know are currently stuck in a situation that college them would've hated. They're trapped in a job or relationship that isn't what they ever wanted because they feel like their time for experimenting in life is long behind them. I'm currently living in the time where I need to try new things and explore my options, and I want to make sure I'm doing it right.

So that's where I'm at, and where probably a lot of you are at. I often forget that no one actually knows what they want and you can't ever be sure that you're headed down the right path.

For now, I'm going to research, do internships and try not to let the fear of making mistakes paralyze me. This isn't the type of article where I have answers for you, and I tell you what your dream job is because there are no answers and clearly I'm as clueless as everyone. Maybe one day I'll make a part two to impart my wisdom when I figure it all out, but that day isn't today.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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