What Do I Want to Be When I Am Older? | An Honest Answer

When I was around five years old, I was asked by my Nan what I wanted to be when I grew up. Apparently, my dream career at that young age was to work in Tesco on the checkout. By age eight, I had swapped scanning groceries for teaching children and when I finally reached secondary school, I had conjured up a range of different answers for the same terrifying question. From dancer to photographer, script writer to flight attendant, it was clear that I didn't have a clue what I wanted to do when I left school. Now, aged 21, having completed my GCSE's and A Levels and been employed at three different companies, I still fail to give an honest answer. 


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There is so much pressure in society to sort your life out at the age of 18. Why are we being forced to make such a life changing decision at such an early stage in our lives?

Over the past year, I've really been trying to find my calling in life. However, no matter how hard I try to come up with a plan or how many times I look on a job site, I'm still uninspired. 

Last week, I let out all my negative feelings in a draft post - how I felt pressured to make a decision, how I felt unmotivated, exhausted and pissed off at my lack of career aspiration.

"Then I look at myself - an unmotivated 21 year old who gets bored very easily, a girl who has no career plan and no idea where she'll end up in the next three years. Am I supposed to just wait for an epiphany?"

Half way through writing the post, I started to feel a weight lift from my shoulders. I let out a sigh of relief, as if a little rant was all that I needed. Those paragraphs, written in a state of confusion and negativity, made me see clearly and think positively. I guess, in a way, writing that post was my epiphany. It made me realise that it's okay to not have a career plan, it's okay to not have an idea of what you want to be or where you want to end up.

For me, life isn't all about work. It isn't about getting a degree and climbing the career ladder. It's about having fun, being happy, going on adventures and spending time with loved ones.

'Nobody on his deathbed ever said, "I wish I had spent more time at the office."'

- Paul Tsongas 

What do I want to be when I grow up?  

I want to be on a plane travelling to a new destination. I want to be sitting in an arena, watching my favourite artist on stage. I want to be behind the camera, capturing a beautiful sunrise. I want to be at a dinner table, surrounded by my family. I want to be in bed on a Sunday morning, wrapped in my partners arms. I want to be laying out carrots and mince pies on Christmas Eve with my children. I want to be cooking up a storm in my own kitchen.

Happiness, health and balance - those are my life ambitions, my aspirations, my honest answer.

Do you know what you want to do in life? Do you feel pressured to make a decision? What are your life ambitions? I'd love to hear your thoughts, comment below or tweet me - I'm @eleanoraustin

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