It’s easy to get caught up in the success of work, but without finding a mission that brings fulfillment to your life, things can start to feel meaningless.
When I was in my high school modern global class, I learned about global genocide and the struggles of various populations around the world. I remember at that time feeling so passionately about my want for involvement, and the desire to help change things. However, I quickly became caught up post-graduation with all of the ‘priorities’ that seemed more important for a future career.
Throughout my undergraduate and early graduate years, all I could focus on was accomplishing tasks that I thought would make me a better candidate for medical school. Every job I worked, class I took, and early career decision I made was revolving around the goal of becoming a physician. It was insanely stressful, and it started to feel like my daily tasks lacked a deeper meaning.
After completing my masters degree, I went on a trip to Haiti. I decided that I wouldn’t set any expectations for this trip, I just wanted to go there to see what I could help with, and to subsequently learn whatever there was to learn. I would volunteer with a medical group, help kids in a sponsored program, but there was a deeper sensation that, like in my teenage years, had once again awaken from within my soul. When I left, I felt overwhelmed with the urge to become involved.
I decided to become a consultant of sorts, using any training and skills that I have to contribute to an organization there. It brings back the feeling of meaning to the work I do, and the education I spent so many years obtaining. Since having entered the workforce, I have found that certain jobs seem like you are just trying to make it through the day. When you leave, you can wonder what purpose you even have there. It’s completely fine to work in such a job, sometimes you just do what you need to do to provide for yourself and your family. Still, I recommend finding something that gives you peace and resets your mind to remember the more important things in life.
I’m not telling you that you need to start going to other countries and that you should be trying to make a large-scale global impact (though if you feel this is right for you, by all means I do encourage this). What I am telling you is that there are ways that you can use any skill you have to improve something in your community, your state, your country, or the world. It can feel intimidating at first, it can seem like you aren’t the type of person capable of engaging in such roles. Yet, if I can, so can you.