Why it’s okay to not know where you’re going
When I left university, I had no f**cking clue what was next. I had spent the vast majority of my adult life having the next step already neatly laid out for me. I plodded along in life like I was supposed to, trying not to stray from the path and doing my best not to cause too much trouble.
After you arrive at post-university ‘no man’s land’, the rule book then says you must get a job, so that is what I did. I moved to London and got a job working in events.
18 months into this ride, I got real with myself. The question — ‘where am I going with this?’ made it’s way into my head several times. As it turns out, I was on auto-pilot, smoothly cruising my way to an average and probably unhappy life.
Not everybody will feel like this however, there are people that unequivocally know what they want and how they’re going to get it right off the bat. But those people are few in today’s world, and I sure as hell wasn’t one of those smug bastards. I had no idea what I wanted from life, all I knew is that it wasn’t going to get it where I was.
At this stage you really have 2 options — death or glory. Stay the course and cruise your way to safety, or throw some balls in the air and see what happens. I didn’t much fancy continuing down the path I was on, so I said ‘f*ck it’ and got out of there quick sharp.
Don’t be fooled into thinking this is was an easy decision though. Leaving everything you’ve known for your entire adult life behind in search of something greater (not that you even know what that is at this stage) isn’t an instant no-brainer. But sometimes you just have to take a leap and follow your gut. Listening to my gut has allowed me to start shaping my own future, and that’s fucking awesome.
Now, the biggest thing to remember if you’ve decided to go for it captain crazy-pants, is that it’s okay to not know where you are going. This is something that I have only just grasped (nearly 18 months into being self-employed) and it has completely changed the game for me.
The biggest cause of stress for me personally over the past 18 months hasn’t been ‘how do I get my clients to pay faster so I can pay rent this month’ or ‘it’s Tuesday afternoon and all of my friends are at work, this is WEIRD’, my biggest cause of stress has been actually focusing on what it is that I’m working towards.
You see, I want to work my nuts off for the thing that I love, I want to work 18 hour days to build a life that I want, I want to take risks and go all-in. But without knowing what it is that you are working towards, all of that hard work will be wasted.
It wasn’t until I took a step back and got real with myself that I slowly started to work that out. You don’t have to know exactly where you are going right now, it’s not essential. What you do need to know however, is what you enjoy. Do more of what you enjoy, and the answers will come. But for f*ck sake, take the pressure off yourself, otherwise you’ll never get there.
Stay true to yourself.
Don’t panic and follow everyone else, take your time and choose your own path.