At this point in my life, I am asked daily what I am going to do with my life and what my future plan is. «Wow, are you studying your sixth semester? Are you writing your bachelor thesis? What are you going to do when you are done?»
These are questions presented to me on a daily basis, which people also seem to assume that I have the answer to, or at least they think I should have. And the fact that I don’t have these answers, fills me with anxiety.
I think we all have felt this anxiety for what the future holds at different points in our lives. If you, like me, had to choose between many different high schools, the decision of which one you should choose was nerve-racking and life-changing. Or at least you thought so when making the decision. When graduating high school, it seemed as if all your friends already knew exactly what they were going to do and where to study. Friends and family kept asking «So Victoria, what are your plans? What are your dreams?» And you just kept smiling and laughing and saying that you were still figuring it out. At least I did that, and I still do.
At the same time, after we made all those previous major life-changing decisions in our lives, we often realise that they weren’t actually that life-changing at all. They were just decisions, and if you ended up not being happy with it, you could just change. So why is it that we keep stressing about these decisions again and again, creating them to be bigger and more important than they really are? Our life experience has already showed us that it’s not that big of a deal. I actually have no idea why that is, and I also don’t think that I will ever really figure it out.
Here in Lund, we are surrounded by some of the brightest and most ambitious students in Sweden. That is something I always try to remember and tell myself. I often feel quite average, or actually regarding school, I feel below average. Then I try to remember that sure, fine, I might be average here in Lund. But that also means that I am average amongst the brightest and most ambitious students in Sweden, which actually means that I am quite far above the national average of a 22 year old economics student. Unfortunately I don’t have a nice statistical source for just that, but as you learn when studying economics: it is reasonable to assume.
All around me I see people getting accepted to their dream masters degree, or getting that dream job. Do not mistake me, I love seeing my friends succeeding and achieving their goals. It really fills me with joy and makes me genuinely happy. At the same time, it fills me with so much anxiety. I makes me so anxious because I still don’t know what my dream is and I don’t really have a plan.
I have decided to stay in Lund for an additional year, studying extra courses in order to prepare myself for a future masters degree. Or so I say.
I like planning for my future, and knowing well in advance what I am going to do. I am not a spontaneous person, no matter how hard I try to be. I like to know what’s going to happen next. I hear my friends saying I’m so lucky that I know what I am going to do this next year, and that I seem so at peace with my decision to stay. And in many ways I am. But in many ways this decision is based on an anxiety of not knowing what is going to happen in the future, and not knowing what the hell I am going to do with my life. I have basically decided to postpone the actual decision for another year.
As of now, I am pleased with my decision. It feel comfortable and safe knowing what I will do for a little more, and also knowing that I will (most probably) still love it. But some part of me will always be filled with the anxiety of in the near future having to make a decision which will lead to an unknown future. But right now, I love Lund and I love this life, and I will postpone any future anxiety for my life path a little longer.