Do not limit yourself

Angelica Cataldo, Columnist

Coming out of high school, I had this fantastical idea that I would find my chosen career, land an amazing job, find the love of my life and live “the dream” all by the age of 25. 

I know, I know, 18-year-old me had some high expectations for 20-something me.

As graduation sneaks up on me, I have become more aware that I have no idea what I want to do with my life. And you know what? I am OK with that.

Not because I’m a carefree college kid, or a lazy millennial, but because I realized living with such a structured and rigid plan only sets me up to be unprepared for the vast possibilities that life could hand me.

I realized my goals did not leave much room for improvisation or really any freedom. 

In the four years I have been in college, I have gone from wanting to live in the big city, to wanting to live in a small, rural town, to wanting to live isolated in a small cabin in the mountains with a dog.

I have gone from wanting to work for a big-time news publication, to wanting to be a war correspondent, to wanting to be the next big thing in science fiction. 

I have changed styles, interests and hobbies, all in four short years.

Who I was when I was 18 years old certainly did not account for so many changes, and I think that was the biggest flaw in her thinking.

Now that I have turned down two job offers and changed the focus of my working plan, I have now seen first-hand that change is good.

I still have many of the same interests and hobbies I had coming out of high school, but my friends and my beliefs have changed drastically.

My parents always told me people change, and I did not want to believe that, but as I got older I realized nothing has ever been truer.

I no longer want the same things as the old Angelica, and I certainly do not want to live out her heinous life plan.

I am not sure what the future holds for me, and I do not plan on always knowing. I think that is the fun in life.

I will never say make goals more realistic and within your reach, because I think anything is possible if you truly want something in life, but I certainly would not limit yourself to such a narrow point of view.

Leaving room for the surprises life throws at you lets you be flexible. You willing to try new things, and not be afraid to stray from the path you have tried to pave for yourself.

I am not saying run away and join a cult; I am simply saying do not limit yourself to a rigid plan, or you could miss out on some wonderful opportunities that may present themselves to you in unusual ways.

Life has a weird way of working out and if you get too wrapped up in whatever you are doing, you might blind yourself to ways you can grow and change.

Angelica Cataldo can be reached at [email protected]