It feels terrifying to try and embrace new challenges and experiences. However, I have found that it's a terror that is also exhilarating, and one that leaves you breathless for your next adventure. I truly felt that terrified excitement for the first time when I studied abroad - I was in a new country, that spoke a language that I wasn't all that fluent in, for the next four months, and everywhere that I looked there was something new to see, do, or try.
I've been trying to understand what the next step in my life is supposed to be - which is a position that I'm sure many people find themselves in. I've often heard that my generation, the *gasp* Millennial generation, are unwilling to work hard, if at all, for the things that they want. We've lived our lives being spoon-fed everything, and so we feel entitled to anything. But in reality, it's not that we are unwilling to work for what we want - it's simply that much more difficult to achieve those goals based on the way our current society is set up.
Do we want to work every day of our lives for a minimum of 60 years, just to retire and be too exhausted to do the things we always dreamed of? If there was a more efficient way of accomplishing our goals, while maintaining an overall zeal for life, why wouldn't we take it?
There's a fine line between living responsibly and being trapped by your life. The last two years have definitely shown me that. I have consistently worked at least two jobs, sometimes even three, just to pay bills. With little in the way of being able to save. Part of that was learning how I am with money, and how I need to be going forward in managing my personal finances. But a majority of it stems from society's belief that you must work, work, work, until you literally cannot anymore, and quite possibly, you'll be able to have the things that you want in life.
I'm not planning to spin a complete 180 and adopt the exact opposite of my current lifestyle. That solves nothing and helps no one. But I am no longer allowing myself to get trapped in this rut. Within the next year, I'm going to make a decision about Graduate School Programs, whether they be to progress in my History Degree studies, or possibly even Law School. Next week, I'll be traveling to Scotland for the first time, which is also the first time I'll have been out of the country in 4 years.
It's going to be terrifying. And exhilarating. Because I'm finally taking the control back in how I want to live my life - because I'll actually be living.