I’ts been almost a year since I graduated. I have an interesting full time job and I’m going on a 5* holiday in the summer. I have a large disposable income which I spend on small moments of pleasure- clothes, jewelry, eating out and other forms of entertainment. I call this spending small moments of pleasure because that’s all they give me. After the goods are bagged and they have found a home in my draws, I’m left with my thoughts and this feeling. This feeling that I was unable to describe until now. I’m not fulfilling my full potential. I have fallen into the dreaded cycle of work=money=things. The more I buy is the more I want. The more I want, is the more I feel that I need to earn. Everybody thinks that i’m successful because I have a job that pays a decent wage. But does money really equal success?

What is success? 

Success, this ambiguous term people seem to throw around. I don’t believe that success is defined by how much you earn. How many people go home to empty house? Family and friends have been forgotten while they chase a better job, a bigger house and a more exclusive credit card. Some may say this is the “poor person’s” definition of success. I couldn’t agree. Money doesn’t keep me warm at night and doesn’t comfort me when i’m upset. We need a certain amount to live but I don’t think major life decisions should be motivated by money.

What is your passion?  

What is the one thing that you can’t go a day without thinking about? Sometimes, while i’m at my desk I wish I was writing a best seller or giving talks to university students about the evils or undergraduate life. This gives me a clear indication of what I should be doing. But sadly I can’t live on dreams, so I had to grow up and get a proper job. This doesn’t mean that I have to give up on what I truly want to do. My passion motivates me to keep going and it should motivate you too.

What about my “proper” job?

In this job market nothing last forever. You could be made redundant, the company could go bankrupt or maybe you job becomes unworkable because you are being bullied. You never know whats round the corner and you need to be prepared for change. I have always said that being self sufficient is an important skill to have. Create your own job/career/lifestyle. No one has the right to tell you what to do or how to feel.

If you are still an undiscovered talent (unemployed graduate) try not to be to hard on yourself. Ask yourself “am I applying for jobs I am passionate about or am I chasing money? We all have to start somewhere and that is likely to be a 9-5 job were someone else sets your schedule. This could be how you spend the next 40 years or it could be a useful stop gap.

And the Moral of the story is…

Whatever you want to be. I can’t tell you how to live or how to think. I am committed to the student/graduate movement and passing on any knowledge that I have. Although  we are the first generation to have so much personal and political freedom, we are still living the same life as our parents. I’m sure they sent us to university so that we could change the world. You can’t do that if you aren’t willing to risk everything.

This blog is dedicated to Miss Raymond Williams. Thanks for never failing to see my potential.