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The title is pretty cliche, I know. However, rather than perceiving it as a cliche statement, manifest it into reality. 

Throughout our entire lives we are pressured to figure out what we want to be in high school, or even sooner. We need to get the highest GPA’s possible, highest SAT score out there, have a job, volunteer, and stand out on college applications. We need to do all of this to be “successful” and “live the life we want”, but in this process, I have realized, we ultimately sacrifice things we love doing most. We are conditioned to make our passions our hobbies and have a “practical” job. 

Despite feeling all of this pressure from parents, peers, and society, remember that this is your life and you should be doing something that makes you happy. People go in search of the perfect job to be able to make a lot of money and have high social status, but in my opinion two of the most successful people are Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, and they have consistently been quoted saying that you should do what you love. Think about it… if you are passionate about something, you will be more determined to fully invest yourself into that line of work. The more determined you are, the more effort you’ll put in, thereby increasing your performance, as stated in the Expectancy Theory. Not only is it a theory I learned in my Behavior in Organizations class, it’s intuitive. So pursue music, travel the world, take up painting, take a leap of faith, or begin a start-up. Follow your dreams and don’t feel the need to settle because of your age or other pressures put on you. Currently, I’m 20 years old and in my third year of college. I only have 2 semesters left after this one and to be honest I don’t know what I want to do with my life yet. For so long I wanted to be a doctor, first off because I love helping people, but also because I wanted job security and the status of being a doctor. I felt pressure from my family and culture and I realized that I was chasing a dream that wasn’t mine. Now I’m trying to focus on what I want to do and plan out my next move. Part of me wants to go to law school, part of me wants to join the Peace Corps, and part of me wants to become a teacher or professor, but at the end of the day these are all the things that make me happy!I will accomplish all of the dreams I have, and that’s simply because I am choosing to live my life how I want to, and I am following my dreams. Don’t let any negativity of others keep you from doing every single thing that you want to do. You only have one life so you might as well live it to the fullest and not have any regrets. 

*all photos provided by Parnia Vafaei

Singing, writing, and photography are what I love to do.
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