Planning for the Future?

2018 hit me with a lot of unexpected curveballs. In two months, my life has been rewritten and in some ways completely put on hold, and I am still unsure of how to deal with that. I have no idea what I am doing, and I think that’s okay. Many of us are entering the final year or two years of our degrees and asking ourselves what comes next. How do we go about planning our futures when we don’t even know what we’re planning for? When we don’t know what kind of life we want, or will be able to have?

To some extent I know what I want in my life. I want kids, I would like a life partner, a life outside of work, and job that can support all of those things. And I don’t think that’s far off from what many of us want. But planning for that future -- for a job and a family especially -- is hard when you don’t know what that future looks like. You only have to glance at the news to know this past year has not been one of hope for the world, and I don’t know what world has been left for me, or what world will be left for my children or for my grandchildren. Yet I remain hopeful, because I know moving forward that we are the next generation, and we have so much capability to change the world. Planning for that future is the first step to reaching it.

That doesn’t necessarily mean we have to know what we want, or we have to have a decisive plan of how or where we’re going to end up. It just means we have to have an idea of what our world’s future is. We can plan for ways to reduce our carbon footprint on the world, in which to get a job, or to have a family, but they aren’t always going to work, and that’s good. Ultimately we learn from our failures. If one decision is not right, then we learn from it and take another step forward toward what is right for us.

If that means taking a semester off, or changing a major, or rewriting who you are or what you want to become, then that’s fine. We are all learning, and we are all wrong at one point in time or another. As a student and adults we are all looking forward to the future. Some of us may have plans laid out: a certain degree, a certain career path. Ultimately the decisions we make, whether they follow a plan or move away from one, are dependent on the person we are in the moment we make a decision. If that changes, then that’s fine. We ourselves are constantly changing, so why wouldn’t our futures and our plans for them do the same?