Your Choice, Even When The Answer Is No
Senior Project Poster
Then my last semester of college hit. There were classes to finish, absolutely no motivation to finish them, graduation packets to fill-out, announcements to make, parties to plan, resumes to polish, pant suits to brush off, confidence to grow, interviews to nail, and jobs to be had. I became obsessed. If I wasn’t in class or working, I was job hunting. I applied to multiple jobs daily.
I was blessed to get interviews, but they didn’t seem to go farther than that. I still held onto hope, telling myself that something better was coming along. I was sure that my preparation, hard work, and determination were enough to ensure I would graduate with a job, a new place, a new plan, a new adventure.
Well, here I am. So close to graduation, and so far from a job. This semester I have applied for at least 50 jobs, had close to 20 interviews, and still I haven’t found the right fit. I began to feel like I had less and less of a choice in my future, that no matter how hard I tried I really couldn’t ensure the path my life would go. I didn’t really like that thought, not one bit.
Today I got to reflect on that a little bit further as I received more “thanks for applying, but no” letters from potential future employers. That was the last straw. I finally swallowed my pride and accepted I was graduating without a job. This led me to reflect on the fact that my life forward has absolutely no plan, whatsoever, at all, nada, nope, not even close.
The more reflecting I’ve done however, I’ve come to realize that we always have a choice. Let me repeat we have a choice, even when the answer is no.
I have the choice to reflect on my interviews, learn from the good and the bad and prepare for the next one. I have the choice to realize I don’t have to apply for every job that even remotely applies to my degree- I can be selective and wait for the one that will be a good fit for me and the company. I have the choice to see that each experience I’ve had is helping me to learn what I do and don’t want in a future employer. I have a choice to realize I’m getting the opportunity to see some amazing companies, and I remember them as I continue to look for a position that will fit. I have a choice to reflect and honestly say “you know, it’s okay. It didn’t feel like the right fit either.” I have the choice to put my value and worth as a human being in more than having a job right after I graduate. I have the choice to celebrate the fact that I’m graduating with a double BS degree in Agricultural Communication and Journalism-something I at times doubted I would be able to do. I have the choice to study faith in the scriptures, conference talks, and church discussions. I have the choice to prayerfully grow closer to God as I plead with him to make my pathway clear.
I have the choice to realize that maybe that’s what he is doing.
I don’t think it’s human nature to like being told no, not even when it’s good for us. I’ve started to put a greater effort into not obsessing over the no, or the dream that will never be fulfilled, but on the silver lining.
I’m trying to trust when God says no, that it means there’s a better yes in the future. I’m trusting that he knows the bigger picture, and knows me better than I know myself.
I’m trusting that not having a job means I’ll get to learn how to have hobbies again (yes, all you fellow grads know the phenomenon of realizing that the past 4 years you forgot how to have hobbies.) I’ll be able to read books that have been sitting neglected on my shelf. I’ll be able to hike, evaluate myself and my goals, and set new goals for the future. I’ll be able to spend time with my dad, and take a deep breath after a year of life-changing circumstances. Mostly, I’m realizing that I’ll be able to move forward, still searching for a job, still praying, still reading my scriptures, still studying faith, and still trusting that God has a plan for me, it is in motion, and there are good things to come.