As my job has evolved into meeting with new-to-the-workforce post-college people, and less students-still-living-off-loans, I find myself wanting to communicate the last year of my life to them. Not in details, but in sentiment.
As they walk into my office, I can see their nervousness, indignation and frustrations with the responsibilities stacking up in their lives. And I get it. I see so much of myself in them it’s almost like having daily meetings with a ghost version of me, the Justine of Pre-therapy work.
And I’m starting to collect stories, listening to their different yet shared experiences, repeating little phrases of guidance.
It’s OK to not know what you’re doing
It’s OK to ask questions
It’s OK to not know the answers
It’s as if they were told, “Just go around that corner, and your whole life will be there” and it’s not. It never was “over there”, because their lives, the ones they’re actually living, are right here. But they’re too busy looking to outside praise, achievements, and Facebook “Likes” to understand.
I can only write this because I’ve been there, and I slip back there often. It’s a deep sense of empathy that is driving my little idea that maybe my story can help. Maybe a blog or a podcast or even a website are in order. I’m not working on anything yet, but I just wanted to put the wish out there. Because the line through my own experience to that of the people I work for now is so similar it’s eery.
And I’m sharing this because like Ira Glass, I too wish someone had told me the below before today. Just what I needed to hear.