When Things Don’t Go as Planned

About a year ago, I remember walking to my apartment with a friend after a long night working together in the newsroom, discussing what would happen following graduation. Senior year was winding down, and while some knew exactly where they were headed to next, I had no clue.

“I think I’ll just work for the guys at my old internship. Since it’s so close to home, I’ll save money that way. And then I’ll do some freelance writing on the side,” I said, confidently.

“You sound like you’ve got it all figured out!”

It sure sounded that way, right? Truth is, I didn’t have it figured out at all. I graduated, decided not to contact my previous internship about job openings, and went into all-out-apply-mode. One of the first replies I received was for a full-time, paid internship in the city, and I took it, because it was now July and I was panicking about being unemployed. A couple months later, I received my first job offer—and accepted it. It wasn’t exactly where I wanted to be, but it was what I wanted to do.

Fast forward to now. Just as I was getting used to my job, the rug was pulled out from under me. They were cutting two positions at the medical journal I work for—and one of them was mine.

At first I felt a sense of relief, oddly enough. Maybe now I could get a job where I really wanted to be, I thought. Then I was angry… why me? And finally, I felt sadness. This wasn’t supposed to happen. This wasn’t my plan.

But how often do things really go as planned? Life doesn’t always go the way you envisioned it would go. You have some sense of control of your life, but the majority of things are just out of your hands.

You could have your dream job… and just as easily lose it.
You could have an “in-the-meantime” job that you don’t really care for… and lose that, too.
You could love everything about your job… but have a boss who is akin to the devil.
You could love your job… but they may want you to relocate.
You could hate your job… but love the people you work with (or vice versa).

Life is about sacrifices. The one thing you are in control of in this life is your own happiness. Do what makes YOU happy. Go for a run on your lunch break. Make time for friends after work. Spend more time with your family. Relax.

Nothing is perfect. You’ll get where you want to be eventually. It just takes time.

“The greatest discovery of any generation is that a human can alter his life by altering his attitude.” –William James, psychologist

(Scientific proof that 40% of your happiness is in your control)

1 comment
  1. hemedfm said:

    Great post. Truly important message more recent graduates should know.

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