What is your “Real World?”

Preschool — Kindergarten — Grade School — College. For most people, it’s 22 years of preparation for the, “Real World.” This past summer, I had my first taste of what it’s like to live the 9–5 job world- or the “real world.”

For 3 months, I woke up at nearly 6 am to endure an hour commute to what I could call, “my day job.” I would walk in, head to my desk, sit down and open up my laptop- that was me for the next 8 hours. Although I was 19 years old, in 3 months I felt like I had already aged 20 years. There were employees around me who had spent two years working there. I could not see myself sitting at the same desk for two straight years.

To me, the “Real World” is what you make it to be. To me, it feels like from a young age we are all fine tuned by our parents and society to do well in school and get a nice high-paying salary job. But what money isn’t is time.

For some people, the “Real World” is about starting a family. Their job is just a means of supporting and raising their children. Working 40 hours a week, and really only having the weekend to spend time with their children while they are still young. Growing old with your partner, but their whole and only life goal is now to make sure their children have a better life than themselves.

For some people, the “Real World” is about living only in the now. Every weekend going to the bars, and discussing about when they are going to make it big but never actually taking the risk. Slowly withering away, and by age 50, looking back and asking, “Where did the time go?” and “what did I do with my life?”

For some people, the “Real World” is about making enough money to retire by 50. Working their ass off their whole lives until they realize that things change fast and life can get pretty dark or boring when retiring with so much life left.

For some people, the “Real World” is about having money to travel the world. Working hard the whole year just to take a measly 10 days off just to travel around a few countries.

All of these personas are ones I observed during my time as an intern. All of these personas are ones that I fear that I will fall into and never realize it until the doors lock behind me and it’s too late. Chances are, I will fit into one of these personas when I do start life in the “Real World”- it’s just a matter of when I realize it.

There are only 24 hours in one day and money can only buy you so much of it to be free. What I learned as an intern is that life is too short to do something you’re not 100% behind to wake up to every morning. Take risks and don’t hold back.

These posts are drawn from and are written to reflect upon my own experiences and viewpoints only. By no means am I trying to persuade or prove a point to the world or general public.