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Why I Can’t Talk So Much About the Future

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at York U chapter.

If I could look into the future, I certainly would. *Cue me endlessly wishing for a crystal ball*

While I know it’s impossible, I ponder without end about whether I am going to land my dream job, or if my hopeless romantic self is going to find the one. The list of worries goes on and on. Not to mention, this exhaustive list is exhausting

I’ve always been taught to focus ahead on the future, which, don’t get me wrong, is very important to think about. Without any thought towards the future, I believe my life would be an utter mess. I can picture my life path like the yellow brick road, leading towards one goal. What is the goal? Well, I have a few. What are the obstacles I will face? I have no clue. Sometimes, all I can do is just “follow the yellow brick road” and enjoy the journey. 

Thinking about the future unleashes feelings of fear, yet also hope and excitement. The year 2022 brought changes in my outlook on what it meant to think about the future. I learned that being too future-oriented means not being present in the moment. This realization impacted me on many profound levels. 

Though it’s a simple principle, it’s easier than I thought to miss out on the little things. Life throws curve balls, and the loss of the present can be felt on a much deeper level. I wonder about how my life should play out and the lengths I feel I should go to achieve them. Role-playing the ambitious heroine of my own life also means feeling overwhelmed and all-consumed when something ruins the plan that I gifted myself. It becomes a vicious cycle where I end up mourning the future. Rather than being obsessed with the what if’s, what I learned is to truly enjoy the company I am surrounded in. The little moments indeed pass me by, and it’s those moments I should be mourning instead. 

The worrisome future I find myself losing sleep over specifically applies to school. My goal this year is to enjoy my last semester of undergrad. What good is it to worry about the unknown (A.K.A. the whole syllabus)? Doing so only ever leaves me with an awful headache and an urge to drop out. 

This mentality also applies to the relationships I had and currently have in my life. Spending less time thinking about the future gives me more time to focus on the present. It allows me to commit to the present. Like many future-oriented people, I firmly believe that our actions and behavior ultimately shape what is to come. However, nobody knows what is promised or meant to be. This makes finding the balance between choosing when to focus on the future and when to live in the present is crucial. Simply put by The Beatles, “Let it Be.” 

Speaking more about balance, I am aware of the cons of living in the past, present, and future. I lived rent-free in the past (which is definitely for another article), but I was never aware of the negative impacts living in the future can have on my peace. Being in the moment seems like the perfect solution to compromise between the what could have been vs. the what if. Yet, it is about having a balance between all three frames of mind. I think consciously choosing to be in the present moment takes a lot of determination and mental strength, in which I have control over my actions in the present. 

I sometimes feel the need to catch up to everyone else on the trajectory of life. However, I rang in the New Year by understanding that there is not one way to go about it. Worrying about the future is not going to change anything, and it is not inevitably going to make my wishes come true. 

Building a future for myself and also giving more room for living in the present is what I intend to do. Someone wise told me to attract and not chase. (Thanks Myah)! I learned that sometimes, chasing only leads to me running into myself.

Sofia is a part time writer at Her Campus for York University. Branching under the sectors of life and culture, Sofia likes to write about her experiences and inspirations, that shape the person she is, and wants to be. She loves to write because it demonstrates her creativity and allows her to connect with other people. Writing is her favourite form of communication because words on paper hold so much meaning, and she hopes to give that to readers. Beyond Her Campus, Sofia works for the City of Vaughan, where she instructs recreational programs for children and youth. She enjoys working with children and youth because learning from them is both a humbling and rewarding experience. Sofia completed her undergraduate studies, majoring in Children, Childhood & Youth Studies, and minoring in Sociology. She is currently in her first year in the Bachelor of Education Program, as a teacher candidate. Aside from writing, Sofia enjoys reading romance novels and watching movies in her free time. Always ready for adventures, she loves discovering new restaurants in Downtown Toronto and enjoys going for walks. But most importantly, spending time with family, friends, and her dog Léo are what brings her the most joy.