So, I’m here.
I have half an hour until my lunch is ready and I plan to use that time to try to sort out this random tangle of thoughts that are clouding my mind.
There’s a special kind of feeling that comes from moving home after university, and I’m going to lay that out for you here. It’s sort of a combination of lots of emotions.
- Trapped- I lack the financial mobility and/or the confidence to throw myself into the world and see where things take me.
- Lonely- time and time again, when plans fail or I can’t think of anything to do or anyone to do it with, it feels like I have no friends. I have to remind myself that this isn’t the case, it’s just that my friends are scattered all over the country.
- Stagnant. Nothing is happening. No development is taking place.
- Embarrassed. This goes hand in hand with struggling not to compare myself. I’m ashamed that I haven’t achieved anything yet. I see so many others being successful and I just feel bad about myself.
- Impatient. I feel like I’m always waiting for something to happen, for someone to finally say ‘yes’ to me. ‘Yes you can start developing your career’, ‘yes you can come and work with us’, ‘yes let’s do something today!’ How long can I keep my sense of self and belief that I am talented and useful? How long is this going to take?
I really make an effort to not compare myself to others ‘comparison is the thief of happiness’, after all, but the more I feel badly about myself, the harder it is.
So today, with all that in mind, I’m going to come up with a plan for how I can counteract these feelings.
- Trapped. Travel! Make a list of friends you want to see and make plans. Travel doesn’t have to be expensive. Coaches are fab and fun, and not bad with an iPad.
- Lonely. Again, make plans! Arrange to Skype friends who are far away. Or call them. Give tinder a go and get a few dates. Make yourself feel good.
- Stagnant. Don’t wait for others to help you to develop. There’s no one more interested in your development than you. What do you want to do? Learn coding. Learn Spanish. Read more. Work on your blog, make videos. Plan your time- introduce Typing Tuesdays and Filming Fridays. Have an answer for the question ‘what have you been doing?’ Use this time as a precious opportunity for self development.
- Embarrassed. If I’m active, I’m doing things and making plans and developing myself, then what is there to be embarrassed about? So I’m struggling with finding fulfilling employment, who isn’t? I’m taking time to develop my talents and abilities and I’m volunteering my time to an organisation that makes a difference to people’s lives. What is there to be ashamed of?
- Impatient. Stop waiting for other people to affirm you and validate your place and your talents. You are skilled and hardworking, and would be an asset to any work place. Let your skills play out and build a reputation for them.
There is something to be said for that rebuff to a common criticism of many different art forms;
‘I could have done that’
‘But you didn’t’.
If you see something someone has produced which you think you could do better at, then prove it! Use that as a testament to your own ability and know that you have a chance at being known for your skill.
If you feel there’s no place for you, then make one.