So I went to my old university for some careers advice last week. When I got into the room I immediately started to lose confidence in my plan…displayed on the shelves were books with motivational clichés about “becoming your own boss” or “working for a brand” or “working for free…why is it worth it?” and then I see some flyers advertising a careers show for JUNE…it’s the middle of August *unimpressed*.
Shortly after my discovery the receptionist shouts over to a colleague and says, “Julie? Can you come here for a sec? Can you read my email and let me know that it sounds ok?”…oh dear GOD…
The careers adviser arrives ten minutes late and ushers me into her room. (note to self; tardiness is a turn off). We quickly start jabbering away; I am talking about me so I’m happy, plus I get to constructively moan about my current situation so it’s all going swimmingly until I realise that I am giving the lady more ideas about how to get a job than she is to me. So I stop. She then concludes our conversation by saying, “You are doing everything right. I can see you are really ambitious and I have no doubt that you will be really successful”….
I smile sweetly. “I am really glad I came.”
So there is a wall and I am banging my head against it like there is no tomorrow. It has become so tiresome that I am not the only one with a headache; my other half has banned the “what the hell am I going to do with my life?!” conversation on certain days just so it gives him a moment of peace.
This mind boggling question keeps me awake at night and brings on tears after a glass of wine and the only thing I can do to starve off the introspective demons it to set myself some activities to lighten the mood which I can recommend for anyone in the same position:
- Count how many times a day you smile (it will surprise you!)
- When home alone, put on your favourite song and dance like a crazy person around the house. (Singing is optional.)
- Talk in a different accent for half an hour (my favourite is imitating Morgan Freeman).
Once all three elements have been completed it is time to get serious. If you feel like you’re always bluffing your way through life, don’t fret – so is everyone else. The thing I have come to realise is that most people feel like that at some point in their life not that that is much consolation.
So the bottom line – I have no idea what I am doing with my life or how to find out what it is I want to. If I work it out, I’ll let you know 😉
In the meantime, these guys might be able to help – http://80000hours.org