The Opinions. Section 8: The dream and the reality.
“Follow your dreams, and there is nothing you can’t do”, was the phrase often told to me by my peers mostly. The teachers themselves were forever silent when I spoke of this, that or they simply nodded their head in agreement before moving on with their work. This was the experience I had when dealing with an ambition (though I suppose I talk a lot and I can be fairly annoying). I’ve never really had a concrete approach to things. More often than not my dreams and “plans” were mere clay roads, fortified with a poorly made concrete layer. When it came time to pursue this ambitious road, the pavement cracked and I had to re-think my route. Thus this week’s topic will be on the fantasy and the reality of a future career ambition.
Doris Lessing was an author of an article I had responded to earlier this semester in a class of mine. Suffice it to say, her suggestion was not only ambitious but also at moments unrealistic. To summarize, she suggested something to the reader that in theory would have been perfect, but in reality is harder to implement (a greater degree of critical thought regarding social laws. While good as a theory and an idea, is difficult to implement due to certain restraints). Now why did I bring this up you ask? The answer is quite simple; it is much easier to dream than it is to actually act upon these ideas. When I was in high school, I was overly optimistic (looking back now). I saw myself with a chest heavy with medals and ribbons as I became the chief of defence staff (General), and I would walk into the light as a shining example of glory, loyalty, unity, and a symbol of strength for Canada. However as the years passed, simply becoming an officer in the Canadian Forces became an uphill challenge for myself. The degree program I am currently engaged in, at times felt as though it was too painful to carry on, and in all honesty I was looking for an alternative rather than to become an officer.
I understand that we as humans change our “game plan” from time to time and more often than not in a lifetime, we wear different “uniforms” and masks. Still, it was disappointing when I was knocked off my feet by a single stroke of the pen. It was devastating, and I can still remember those days when I would spend a good few hours in the councillors’ office (personal councillors available on campus). In the end I learned to accept that not all of our plans work out in the end (though I still have a few moments where it is hard to digest this truth).
Though I concede to some in regards to making a dream a reality, I must point out that they are part of the fortunate few. Perhaps it was their socioeconomic status that permitted them to do so, or that they were so well connected that it was not difficult to find the position of their desire. For the rest of us “common folk”, the world is a different place and we see it through a different lens. We must approach things with a sober and sound mind, so that we will suffer less from disappointment when things do not exactly work out as planned.
Now I may be walking the same route as Lessing when I say we require a sober, collected pattern of thought, and some might even be quick to point out that my suggestion is too ambitious, that I am not seeing the reality of human emotion and the passion of the moment (legal definition: striking within the moment where passions are high). I will retort their statement by explaining that while I would desire a sober thought, I will stress sober “second” thought. I am no stranger to being trapped within the passion of the moment, and this is why we must have a sober “second”, thought. Far from second guessing (which is often a certain degree of doubt), sober second thoughts occur when you have time to sit down and analyze the situation from a critical point of view. Whether limited by socioeconomic limitations or just the lack of endurance, we must look at career choices with a sound mind when we think over our proposed directions in life. It can be very dangerous should we invest resources and time, only to find our venture had collapsed and our ambitions buried in the snow and dirt.
Various careers face unpredictable job market projections, and unless the individual in question is well connected, it can be devastating to find that there are no positions available in your field of expertise (particularly if you went to school for seven years). It is one thing to dream about a career in a particular field, dealing with the realities of the day to day life is a whole different beast altogether. Now I write with a degree of realism in my works as I am quite fed up with certain persons having their heads “up in the clouds” (overly dreaming, or aiming too high if you prefer this phrase). However I will respond to a possible comment some might fire at my direction. “Your just making an excuse for yourself”, some might say. Well I follow the legal definition of “excuse”, and in that my reasons are that reality is a different beast and that not all of your worldly ambitions will come true. I will also add the legal term of “justification” and state that I am justified my “actions” so to speak because as a young adult in his twenties I am beginning to see the world from a much grounded viewpoint. Thus I have no “excuses”, rather I am merely being careful when deciding the future of my life. So you naysayers, you can take your little quotes and statements and remove yourself from the public view as you are a cancer to this society. Blind motivation and over-zealousness is often dangerous and can lead to disappointment and despair. Do not forget that.
Ultimately my readers, we all have our choices to make in life. What you do in life, is completely your choice. If you do not take the student loans, and go to university because you dislike debt, that’s your choice. If you do take on the debt but believe the cost is justified, do so because you believe it to be the right decision. All I can do is merely offer a word of advice, but like slogans, propaganda, advertisements, and laws, I can be ignored. I will hold no grudge, nor lose any sleep over your decisions in life. You dictate what happens, my readers, as you have control of your lives now (at least the ones I am referring to, that being the age group of 19+). Thank you all for reading, and I will see you next time.