When I first got to university, I was convinced that I knew my path in life; things would go swimmingly. I was going to finish strongly academically with a degree in history and cinema studies, move on to do graduate school and eventually become a filmmaker or get a job within the film industry. I had no time to think about pursuing extracurriculars or consider my hobbies as important or even get into a romantic relationship. I had a concrete route and I wasn’t planning on exploring the woods around me. But a year later, I slowly got involved with my student council. I started seriously taking up and practicing photography, changing my plans for what I wanted to do after university with every photo session I couldn’t help booking. I had adamantly told myself that I wasn’t going to date in university, and I went and got myself a partner.
But this was ok, I told myself, I would just have to create a new route, a new plan. So I built it all up again. I set goals and far off destinations. This time, I would focus my time within cinema studies but eventually go into freelance photography after I finished my undergraduate studies. I saw an easier position within the student council and decided that I should aim for that. My plans started to revolve around my partner. And just when I started getting comfortable in this map, things started to dissolve again. This time, I was tired and confused – not a great combination. I was tired of things not going to plan and unsure of how to make things go accordingly. Now, I wanted to go into the art journal industry and get into lifestyle photography. I was meeting new people who were teaching me new things and new ways to view the world. Just a few days ago, I made the decision to aim for president of my student council this next election cycle. I broke up with my partner.
Jason Silva, a brilliant speaker, muses that people are constantly creating a self depending on who they’re with and what they see about themselves. It’s the reason why we act differently with our parents, friends, and romantic relationships. When these relationships are damaged, weakened, or end, they also damage, weaken, and end the self you’ve created. However, I think this can be applied to our plans, too; we create a plan depending on where we’re at, and when they end, we’re disconcerted and left questioning why things are going a certain way. But I also think that at some point going with what your mind and gut (and heart, as cheesy as that sounds) are telling you to do. You have to submit to the tide in the river before you are able to swim.
I realized that change is a good thing. That not changing means to not re-evaluate your beliefs, ideas, dreams, goals and never really getting out of boxes that you construct for yourself. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with being comfortable with familiarity. I know I need that little mental pat on the back that tells me which direction I’m headed in, at least, an anchor during the storms of thoughts in my head. But if you don’t check yourself every now and then, you’ll never know if where you are at is truly where you want to be. I’m in the end of my third year and I’ve still got a long ways to go. But right now? I’m swimming along the current.