So you’re done with your dissertation…what now?
Oh the dreaded “Now What” question.
I never thought I’d be asking this question so far into my twenties. I mean, you’re supposed to have it all figured out by 26, right? Like, a few years into a steady lifelong office job or something. Or at least know where the heck you’ll be living in three months. So my current state of “up-in-the-air”-ness (sorry, ever since the dissertation, my brain+words=a struggle) should be worrying me, right?
For some reason, I don’t feel worried. In fact, I feel like all the opportunities in the world are opening in front of me. There’s something nice about finishing schooling in my mid-twenties. I’m not exactly an old wisewoman, but I know a heck of a lot more now than I did back in 2010 when I finished undergrad. I have much more drive, work ethic, and understanding of where I want to go in life. I’ve already been down a few paths and discovered what isn’t going to work for me. Can’t be that long before I find the path that works, right?
And here’s the thing
What I’ve learned in my four years since finishing undergrad and making my way into the “adult world” is that with enough drive and focus you really can achieve anything you want (I know it sounds cheesy, but it’s true). I’ve also learned that things don’t happen overnight. I’ve learned how to plan for the long term and to be patient. The older I get, the faster the months seem to go by anyway.
As LWA and my other projects experience growing pains, I learn and grow alongside them. This project has taught me a lot of things–particularly about myself and those attributes I most need to improve on. But I think the most important thing–especially as a freelance writer (or anyone who works for him or herself)–is not to let setbacks weigh you down. In the writer world, most of us keep some version of the mantra “for every 100 no’s there’s a yes” pinned somewhere in our subconsciousness. If we didn’t have faith in our own talent and vision, then we’d never get anywhere at all.
It is with this attitude that I am seizing the coming months: voraciously eating up every opportunity I can get my hands on until I get to a “yes”, until I find what works for me.
So, no, I don’t have an “official plan”
I have a fractal approach to work and to my future life, and I know eventually, everything will come together.