The Mindset Required for Your Dream

A opinion piece detailing the mindset needed in high school to set yourself up for success.

There are millions of opportunities in our world, just like there are millions of careers.. Each one of these careers have employees in them, they do their work scrupulously, they get off work, and they head home for the day. This is norm. But what many people fails to recognize is that no matter how much money you make, no matter how high a position you are in a company, if you don’t enjoy it, you’ve have wasted your time getting there. Life is too short and too precious to give in to what society wants — it’s time to start thinking about what you want. Like what Whole Earth Catalog mentions (perhaps it’s more famous from Steve Jobs’ 2005 Commencement Speech for Stanford Undergraduates): ‘Stay hungry, stay foolish.’. This quote sums up literally the dreams of millions of young people before they graduate from university — these graduates at first are hungry for job and for money, but in doing so, they are throwing away every advantage they have against society. During the most exciting time of these students’ lives, spend it on having fun because never again in their life will they have the same opportunity. In a way, the second part of the quote juxtaposes the first part — to stay foolish is also something with great sentimental value. When we look at ourselves — the intelligence species that we are — we are genuine, loving, and in general… foolish; we cannot measure and endure everything that’s happening in this world, heck we can’t even see past our own Earth’s atmosphere with our naked eye let alone everything else in the universe. The point is… we are always hungry for knowledge and fun, but we stay foolish to remind ourselves to not overdrive for the ideals that’s too far out of reach.

I believe each and every student has a rich imagination, it’s the society that we live in today that’s degrading their beautiful minds. We deserve better and thus, this quote should not be taken any less than it’s true values. Men and women are held for their words — in this so called ‘impartial’ society, a person’s life is ultimately determined by which grandiose doors the student steps into during high school. Their high school career, especially marks, determine what university, and what university determines what kind of job they can get and thus their salary is affected too. This chain reaction is what governs the traditional society — in a way, it still does. But… the world is changing, thus this chain reaction needs to change too if we are to keep up with the next era of human evolution. In this, one may ponder something, so what do I need to do during my youth to live a fulfilling life with an enjoyable career? One might say this question is stating the obvious, but moreover, it brings in an excellent perspective: to think early and far ahead is the first step to setting up the stage for success. So if I join 10 academic clubs, am I fraught a career I truly want? The answer is a stern no; academics can only get you so far in life. Clubs and extracurricular activities are more important in this regard as most employers either for full time jobs or internships look for experience, thus the extracurricular side of things, and less of the academic side. Look for groups or organizations that immerse you in the skills needed to achieve a high level in that career (under the circumstance that you like what you’re learning and doing). Of course, academics wise, you must know your area of specialty, but social experience is what links that specialty together with your career. If you hate both of these, then don’t even bother going to the interview — the interviewers will see that you have no passion whatsoever in what you’re applying for through your mannerism and attitude towards the subject in question. In short, follow your passion. It will take you to places you’ve never imagined going to before.

Most people you see on the streets nowadays are pretty much like zombies, they walk like one, they talk like one, and they in general act like one. Why? Because they hate their career but have no time or method to change careers because of restraints like family, contracts, or other influencing factors. From this, two lessons can be learned. Firstly, to avoid this mid-life crisis like turmoil, pick the right career. Right when you graduate, really take the time think carefully about the immense job searches that’s about to come at you. Secondly, graduate high school with a good enough mark and a diversified overall portfolio of social activities. This way, you can maximize the chances of getting into a good school out of the ones you applied for.

From a previous high school student’s point of view, I can say that although high school is a time of making friends, it is also a time of personal reflection. This time should be used to reflect the past: what have I done? What can be improved upon? The present: What am I good at? What do I love? What’s my passion? And finally the future: What do I want to achieve? Why do I want it? What do I need to do to get there? This evaluation is incredibly important. Although it may feel incredulous that high school is almost over, or the fact that you just turned 18 (21 in the US). A hefty responsibility gets laid on your shoulders. It’s the responsibility for yourself, the responsibility of caring for the welfare of others, and the responsibility to the world.

Everybody in the world in summary is striving to perfect the aforementioned responsibilities; although it may take numerous forms, the fundamentals remain the same: take care of yourself, take care of other people, and take care the world. In our modern society, so many people violate these three fundamental values which is why our world is turning into a heap of trash, anything from environmental concerns due to greenhouse gas emissions — industrials only care about money and not the welfare of others or the world — to political uprisings, war and civil unrest, and poverty due to certain historical events, the world did not development into its full potential. This macro economical scale of concerns manifests itself as problems in our everyday lives. Thus, to conclude, it is up to the youths of today to correct everything that has gone wrong in the last century and fix it in the incoming era marked by advances in technology, AI, and quantum computing. We are growing faster by the day, and youths must love what they do with the right mindset to enable our civilization to keep up and in time, fix the exponential growth of poisonous mediocre failure that’s becoming more evident by the minute.