Hey guys! Welcome back to ZoeVogue and Happy New Year! 2017 marked a huge transition for me, one I didn’t think was going to be so hard mentally. I graduated from college, worked retail during the summer, then moved back home and have been working at Saks. My spiritual and social life declined drastically and although I’ve been unsure about my future while I was in college, now I just didn’t know what purpose my life had anymore.
This isn’t supposed to be a sad post but if anyone else relates to having a hard time graduating from college and transitioning into adulthood, just know you’re not alone and I’m going through it too. In this post, I just wanted to reflect on the good and bad revelations I’ve had this year, and look forward to the future and what God has for me. I think it’s important to reflect and reevaluate your feelings and purpose and goals regularly, and writing them down, especially for me is very therapeutic. And I know this post is kind of late, but I still wanted to get it out any way to look back on next year.
Be Patient in Your Season
One of the things I learned this year or wish I had appreciated more is to appreciate the season you’re in. I loathed having a retail job after graduating because I felt like I was supposed to have a job in my field and I feared getting stuck in retail and wasting my degree. But all my jobs looking back were something I needed. And nothing is wrong working retail it was just the only experience I had and I wanted something different to help me learn what I wanted to do with my life. But I wish I didn’t waste my mental energy on feeling dissatisfied with where my life was and hoping I was somewhere else. Looking back I think it was good for me to transition out of college with an easy job. My retail job out of college helped me pay my rent over the summer and for my trip to New York. It was also close to my apartment. My second job at Saks introduced me to a lot of luxury brands was closer to my home when I moved back with my parents and is a great resume builder so it was just what I needed. I’m taking a risk now moving for this new job but I have faith it will all work out.
Post Grad Life is Lonely
After I moved back home I had my family but I no longer had a friend group and I was no longer constantly surrounded by my peers. Not having a car definitely didn’t make it easier for me to try to connect with people. I miss the easy access to places and people being on campus gave me. That’s what I miss the most about college. It’s true what they say that it’s harder to make friends as adults. Nobody’s schedule aligns all the time so it’s hard to make plans and being tired from work at the end of the day I didn’t want to do anything. But even as an introvert having close friends in college showed me I really do need people around me. It made me realize how important human connections and community is for a better well being. For now on, I’m going to put more effort into maintaining my friendships and making new ones.
Learning new things from Different Perspectives
I went from my safe Christian bubble in college to being in the ‘real’ world so to speak with people who don’t believe the same things as me. It’s not a new experience for me but it wasn’t the same as having a community of believers I could spend time with as well. However, being around different types of people and getting to hear their perspectives on life made me realize we’re all still the same, we can still learn things from each other and we’re all beautiful. We’re all broken. We all have a story to tell, and in these interactions, I still find God in the spirit of humanity. So although, at times I loathed having to go to work, I definitely cherished spending time with my coworkers, and as much of them were older than me, they gave me advice and helped me learn new things too. It’s an obvious statement to make, that you can learn new things from different people, but this year I really got to experience that.
Don’t define yourself by your Occupation
This year has been a hard one for me mentally. Just because I’ve had so many frequent lows and highs, like the highs would be going to New York but I’d been stressed when I was there. A low would be getting excited to work on my blog and lows was feeling like no one cared and that it wasn’t going anywhere. Excited to start my new job but sad I was still working retail and comparing myself to my peers who had moved to New York or gotten a job in marketing. These highs and lows were a daily constant.
And in starting my fresh new identity as an adult I lost myself this year. My whole life mostly I’ve been a student it’s all I’ve ever known and now I’m not? I mean it’s really nice not having to go to class, take exams, do homework, or group projects oh lord. But now I’m like who am I now and I started defining myself by my accomplishments and my job and since I didn’t value my job in retail and since I felt I didn’t accomplish anything, then I felt like I was just missing the mark on life. I still don’t know what I’m doing but I’m still Zoe student or whatever job. I’m still valued and seen and loved, because I was put on this earth for a reason, I’m still me. And what’s more important than trying to get your life together as quickly as possible and ‘make it’ is to realize that goals and accomplishments can make you happy or they won’t. They’re good things to have but true joy and happiness are in being content in who you are, knowing you can be happy in the stillness just by being.
Comparison is the thief of joy
Everyone knows this. It’s a cliche at this point, but I literally could boil down all the sadness I felt this year to comparison. I compared where I was in life to where other people were at so I thought I had a terrible life. I compared how I looked, how many Instagram followers I had, what my social life looked like compared to others etc. That’s why I have to keep reminding myself that everyone’s path is different. God has a different plan for all of us. Sometimes I really hate social media because it makes you compare yourself to strangers like who cares what they’re doing you don’t even know them! I always like to have a scripture that defines my year and this year was everyone’s toil is out of jealousy out of another it’s all meaningless. It’s important to have goals and dreams but if you’re just doing it because so and so has this and you want that you’re going to always be striving, never satisfied. Putting so much energy into things that will ultimately pass away is not pointless but it’s also not something to get all consumed by. I feel like this is something I will be forever learning.
Well there you have it, my lessons learned in 2017. I hope you’ve enjoyed and related to this post and will continue with me on this blogging journey in 2018! What lessons did you learn in 2017, let me know or leave a link to your post in the comments!