It's OK To Not Have Your Life Planned Out

It's OK To Not Have Your Life Planned Out

Life never goes as planned, so why force it?
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I have always been a planner. It's just who I am. A lot of people say that they aren't comfortable with uncertainty, but I take it to a whole new level. I absolutely can't stand the idea of uncertainty clouding any aspect of my life. I need to be aware of the path that I'm on and where I'm headed. I don't like to leave things up to chance - I like to be able to take full control of my life.

Going into college, I thought I had it all figured out. During my senior year of high school, I targeted my future career and had that affect all of my decisions in regards to the future. My program of study was only offered at three of the schools in my state, so this chosen career path heavily influenced where I ended up going to college. I planned out all the courses that I needed to take over the next four years, and already had my post-grad plans outlined. With these plans in place, I felt very certain about my future.

Certainty is an incredibly short-lived thing. As I navigated my way through my freshman year of college, I started to realize that everything I had planned for myself wasn't the right fit for me personally. I began to doubt myself and even started to dread having to take all the courses I needed in order to get a degree in my chosen program. The thought of switching my major scared me, and I never thought I would be one of these people who couldn't decide what to major in.

However, I took the plunge. I switched my major and minor and began a fresh start in my undergraduate studies for sophomore year. And you know what? I strongly believe that it was the best decision I've ever made. So not only did I completely change the course of my life, I was perfectly content with it.

I thought that if I changed my major, I would not be able to graduate time or would have to scramble in order to take all the classes that were required for completing the degree. But by some miracle, it turns out that not only will I graduate on time, I might even be able to graduate a whole semester early, something that wouldn't have been possible if I stuck to my original plan. It's amazing what kind of unforeseen opportunities can appear once you decide to follow your heart instead of your brain.

I encourage you to resist the urge to plan out every second of your life and instead just do what you think is right and watch it play out for itself. I know more than anyone how difficult it is to relinquish this kind of control, but the possible outcome is well worth it.


Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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8 Struggles Of Being 21 And Looking 12

The struggle is real, my friends.
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“You'll appreciate it when you're older." Do you know how many times my mom has told me this? Too many to count. Every time I complain about looking young that is the response I get. I know she's right, I will love looking young when I'm in my 40s. However, looking young is a real struggle in your 20s. Here's what we have to deal with:

1. Everyone thinks your younger sister or brother is the older one.

True story: someone actually thought my younger sister was my mom once. I've really gotten used to this but it still sucks.

2. You ALWAYS get carded.

Every. Single. Time. Since I know I look young, I never even bothered with a fake ID my first couple of years of college because I knew it would never work. If I'm being completely honest, I was nervous when I turned 21 that the bartender would think my real driver's license was a fake.

3. People look at your driver's license for an awkward amount of time.

So no one has actually thought my real driver's license is fake but that doesn't stop them from doing a double take and giving me *that look.* The look that says, “Wow, you don't look that old." And sometimes people will just flat out say that. The best part is this doesn't just happen when you're purchasing alcohol. This has happened to me at the movie theater.

SEE ALSO: 10 Things People Who Look 12 Hate Hearing

4. People will give you *that look* when they see you drinking alcohol.

You just want to turn around and scream “I'M 21, IT'S LEGAL. STOP JUDGING ME."

5. People are shocked to find out you're in college.

If I had a dollar for every time someone had a shocked expression on their face after I told them I'm a junior in college I could pay off all of my student loan debt. It's funny because when random people ask me how school is going, I pretty much assume they think I'm in high school and the shocked look on their face when I start to talk about my college classes confirms I'm right.

6. For some reason wearing your hair in a ponytail makes you look younger.

I don't understand this one but it's true. Especially if I don't have any makeup on I could honestly pass for a child.

7. Meeting an actual 12-year-old who looks older than you.

We all know one. That random 12-year-old who looks extremely mature for her age and you get angry because life isn't fair.

8. Being handed a kids' menu.

This is my personal favorite. It happens more often than it should. The best part of this is it's your turn to give someone a look. The look that says, "You've got to be kidding me".

Looking young is a real struggle and I don't think everyone realizes it. However, with all the struggles that come with looking young, we still take advantage of it. Have you ever gone to a museum or event where if you're under a certain age you get in for a discounted price? Yeah? Well, that's when I bet you wish you were us. And kids' meals are way cheaper than regular meals so there have definitely been a couple times when I've kept that kids' menu.

So, all in all, it's not the worst thing in the world but it's definitely a struggle.

Cover Image Credit: Jenna Collins

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Academics and Creativity Conflicts

Academics is definitely something important for students, but it seems that creativity is pushed aside too often.

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As students, we are heavily focused on academics. Some of us may also be heavily focused on athletics. Anything that helps or is integrated into our academic careers has a way of controlling how we live our daily life. We go to class, we study and do homework, we attend activities/work, and then we most likely have little time to relax.

One thing that seems to lack in the academic world is creativity. Many students may say "Well, I'm not creative." Why have students subjected themselves to being uncreative individuals? How does someone define "creativity" as the verbatim definition across the world? Creativity can be used widely if we are aware of how it can be done.

  1. In the classroom, students can find creative ways to approach a debate, a different way of understanding a topic, changing the argument and allowing different perspectives and voices to be heard, and so much more.
  2. Students can find different ways of changing the issues our communities may face such as homelessness, segregated communities, etc.
  3. Organizations can be created to fill in the gaps our communities may have (including in a university).
  4. Students can remain to do creative activities such as crafts, writing, art, etc. This can be done within different organizations or in the comfort of the student's home.
  5. There are different platforms that encourage creativity like photoshop, video editing software, websites like Wattpad to create and share your own stories, and more.

We cannot let academics take over every moment of our lives. It can easily result in a point where we have no motivation to do anything at all because we are in a constant routine that can drain us. We are more than school, although it is still very important. If we shall succeed, we have to embrace the things we love to do and not forget about who we are.

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