I feel like every time I blog, it’s either because I’ve just finished another co-op term or another school term. Well this time it’s because my 3rd year just ended. I’m sorry – I swear I’ll update more frequently (god knows how many times I’ve said that 😛)!
Somehow, the older I get and the closer I get to finishing school (and entering the job market), the more scared I get. It helps that I get a chance to reflect and think about all this while I run (for the uninformed, I’ll be running the Tough Mudder in a month and have been training for it for a while – support me!). As a side-bar, here is an AMAZING comic by the ever-hilarious Oatmeal that a friend linked to me about running and eating Nutella straight from the jar.
So as I do with anything that I’ve been mulling over, I put it down on paper here in this blog:
How I feel about my next few years.
I wonder whether someday in the future, there will be one moment where I think to myself – today, right now, I just started living [what my 18-year-old-self labelled] ‘the real life’.
To the 18-year-old-me, ‘the real life’ consisted of many important, daunting responsibilities. This list included fun things like: filing my own income taxes, paying property taxes, figuring out how to get the best [automobile] insurance rates, planning out my savings (stocks? mutual funds? GICs? I DON’T KNOW!) and contributing to my RRSP, planning out my financial future so that I would be able to fully buy my own property, etc… etc… etc…
You can tell I wasn’t that excited for the real life.
18-year-old-life was simpler. All I had to do was make sure I continued making top grades, making new friends, and keeping healthy. Even back then, I wondered whether it would hit me one day (but one day that was far far far far off into the future) that I had transitioned into real life. Or would it rather be a shift so slow that I wouldn’t notice.
Saddest part is, even now at 23 and one year away from graduating pharmacy, I still don’t think I am ready for the real life. How pathetic is that. I thought for sure, by 23, I would have my shit together. But perhaps my scale is off – it seems like in my generation, real life is starting later and later for a variety of reasons.
1.) Job market. Let’s be dead honest here, boys and girls. The job market in general is shit for our generation. Between the current labor force retiring later and later, and the huge influx in University-trained grads, it is now basically a prereq. to have a bachelor’s degree before even THINKING about applying for ANY job (that’s right, ANY job, not even jobs related to your discipline). Heck, if you are a science undergrad and you want to find a job related in your field, good luck – you’re probably better off trying again after you get a Masters!
2.) Property. As we become more and more developed and the housing bubble continues to expand, the price of property is simply too high for fresh grads to reliably purchase. We all know that the ultimate investment is in property (not stocks, not mutual funds, NOPE) because it always demonstrates a positive ROI. It only makes sense for my generation to live with our parents (cost-efficient, allows us to save money and hopefully invest it wisely) until we accumulate enough to maybe purchase our own place.
So the whole moving out and property tax part of real life definitely starts much later for my generation.
3.) Over-protected. This one’s hard to explain, so I will let the organization ‘Young Leaders’ phrase it more eloquently:
Where did we go wrong?
• We’ve told our kids to dream big – and now any small act seems insignificant. In the great scheme of things, kids can’t instantly change the world. They have to take small, first steps – which seem like no progress at all to them.
• We’ve told our kids that they are special – for no reason, even though they didn’t display excellent character or skill, and now they demand special treatment. The problem is that kids assumed they didn’t have to do anything special in order to be special.
• We gave our kids every comfort – and now they can’t delay gratification. And we heard the message loud and clear. We, too, pace in front of the microwave, become angry when things don’t go our way at work, rage at traffic. “Now it’s time to relay the importance of waiting for the things we want, deferring to the wishes of others and surrendering personal desires in the pursuit of something bigger than ‘me,'” Elmore says.
• We made our kid’s happiness a central goal – and now it’s difficult for them to generate happiness — the by-product of living a meaningful life. “It’s time we tell them that our goal is to enable them to discover their gifts, passions and purposes in life so they can help others. Happiness comes as a result.”
In conclusion, I feel overwhelmed because where I am now and where I want to be are so far apart.
I think this is a good place to be, because now I have the next 4 months of co-op to work on life.
For those who are wondering how to tackle this, let me share a secret – ask your Dad.
Because while you were still in diapers, he was already trying to figure out ‘the real life’ world 2.0 – having a kid. If there is anyone who would know everything about life, it would have to be him. Big shout-out to Pappa Tsang!
If running has taught me anything, it’s that if you’re faced with a long, arduous journey, the best way to tackle is to just focus on hitting it one step at a time. Because when you’re faced with what seems insurmountable, it’s easy to just quit it and fall victim to the bleurgh right away.
But if you just focus on small steps, the next thing you know, you’re done.
Go Team Victor!
pz out for now.
Music Mondays! (erghmagawd it’s actually Monday this time!):
I thought I was done with kpop, but B2ST releases a pretty awesome song – catchy and haunting:
Vicetone is an artist I am very excited about. Their style is EXACTLY the kind of genre I’m looking for in EDM – fast-paced, strong base-line, and always huge drops into a sweet chorus:
ARGH so excited to be seeing them soon. Even if they’re just the opening act for Nicky Romero.