I’m so, so tired of not knowing.
Yesterday I learned a powerful lesson – the most affecting of recent times – and it is the courage to seek for help. It is arguably a braver act to raise one’s white flag and call for attention that – and don’t begin your sentence with an apology – “I think I need guidance and steer on this. I think I’ve maxed out my capacity when I am left to my own device; what I can do, how to figure things out by myself. I need help to keep going on.” I can’t do it alone – but it doesn’t mean I can’t do it at all.
I remember some months ago, when I told a friend, “When I’m at my best – I’m at my best. I’m excellent.” It’s true. Yesterday I told my older cousin, “I am intelligent. I am an intellectual – I value being intellectually challenged. When I’m not given this… it’s frustrating. Because I’m not stupid.” My point is: I have good traits (too) and it’s about damn time that I re-shift my focus on utilizing my strengths as opposed to belittling and stabbing my weaknesses.
I want to be so good at project engineering that the day I get to get out of it – no one can tell me that I didn’t do my best; and that I didn’t deliver exceeding capacity. I want to be so good at it that the day I get to leave it behind for my true passion and cause, environmental engineering and hopefully someday, environmental policy – no one can say I knew sh*t nothing about my first job and career, my building blocks. No one can say I didn’t fuckin’ earn my starting point.
I’m fighting back: let’s commit and begin the learning curve in earnest.
“I think a lot of students think they graduate and must find this one singular job or track that you will love and stay with forever. Truth is, you’re going to have multiple jobs. You’re going to try something for a few years and possibly hate it, and then adjust. You will be constantly questioning, shifting, and building your career…But here’s the thing… I didn’t chase my passion, but I became passionate about what I chased. And you should do the same whether it’s your job or a hobby. Because what’s more important than just having a dream, is having the ambition to reach them. Be ambitious and enthusiastic in whatever you do. Always strive for more in and outside of your career. You’ll be surprised at where that might lead you. Even strong enthusiasm toward something is a challenge for some, but can transform you life. It did mine, and brought me here.”
— Philip Wang, from his Commencement Speech to the UCSD Class of 2016