To be young and ambitious!
We’ve been lied to!
We’ve been sold the idea that we can chase our dreams; that we can carpe diem through life; that we can drop out of varsity and be the next Zuckerberg.
We’ve been lied to!
We are busy making plans like, ‘I will be a millionaire by 25’ and ‘I want to retire before my 30th birthday’.
The reality on the ground isn’t as rosey as we’d like it to be. The people who are telling you to chase your dreams don’t tell you how you will go to varsity, get good grades, then struggle to find a job. They don’t tell you how you will struggle to find a job that will pay you enough to ‘keep up with your friends’, except your friends have a similar job as you so you wonder how they can afford the expensive car and eating out and only buying Woolies groceries and and and…
The people telling you to chase your dreams don’t tell you how you will find yourself uninspired in your nine-to-five job. How you will get frustrated being surrounded by colleagues, some older than you, some your age, who have long given up on their dreams. These people, they won’t tell you this.
These people also won’t tell you how you will have one quarter-life crisis after another because, “This isn’t where my life is supposed to be”. No. They’re not going to tell you this.
These people are lying to you.
Here is what these people are not telling you:
• You may wake up one morning, a third week into your new job, and realise that, “This isn’t what I want”. And yes, this will be after all those years spent in varsity, studying to become that one thing.
• One day, you will look in the mirror and not recognise yourself – you will have a momentary out-of-body experience and wonder how you got where you are.
• During said out-of-body experience, you will ask yourself questions like, “Who am I? What am I meant to do with my life? What is my purpose?”
• You will have a quarter-life crisis.
• You will have another quarter-life crisis. And another. And another.
• You will wonder if you should chase those “unrealistic” dreams you had, back in varsity before you had to worry about petrol price, debit orders and your car installment.
When you get that nice job, when you’re driving your nice BMW 1 Series or Golf 6, when you’re eating at Tasha’s taking pictures on your iPhone to post on Instagram, or sitting in your recently rented townhouse eating Woolies malva pudding while watching Suits or Scandal, try and remember.
Try and remember how you wanted to start that company. Remember how you wanted to build that library back home? Remember how you wanted to challenge the status quo? Because it’s easy to forget these things.
Try and remember because to be young and ambitious can be a burden, but it’s also a great opportunity.
Whatever you do, don’t let the fear of greatness paralyse you into doing nothing.