I’m not that very far from being twenty-one, but I think I’m far enough from it to answer a question that someone asked my wife and me a few weeks ago: What would you say to your 21-year-old self?
She’s 21, and when she asked that question to us, I instantly thought of a few things that helped me when I was her age. Not to say that I was perfect when I was that twenty-one because I was not. But let me just share a few things to you that helped me through.
Becoming someone is far more important than achieving something.
What I mean is that, being is better than doing. I know the feeling of recently graduating from college and trying to find the next best thing to do with your life. But what I realized is that it doesn’t matter what I do if that won’t lead me to become the person God wants me to be. In whatever career you may take, I’ve learned that God is more concerned with who I am becoming with that career rather what I’m doing in that job. Not that He’s not concerned with my day-to-day activity, it’s just He’s more concerned with our character, who we become as a result of what we do. In your job, God is more concerned with your character, more than you getting promoted or landing at the right position in your company.
Invest more on what builds your character towards what you do. You may not be in your dream job right now, but what you’re doing now can be an opportunity to build your character so that when you’re already in that job, you’ll have the character to sustain it.
Find meaning in what you want to do.
Why do you want to do what you want to do? Why do you want that job? Why do you want that career path? What’s the purpose of you taking that job?
Those are important questions, right? But I hope the answer would not just be about getting rich and having all the money that you can hoard. I hope that you’ll find a purpose that would give you the ultimate fulfillment and satisfaction. Something that would matter for eternity, that’s the real purpose of your life. Honestly, you won’t find that apart from your Maker. You were created for a purpose so let your creator ultimately, tell you what to do with your life.
The right voices lead to the right choices.
It is very important that you surround yourself with the right people. The right people that can help you become the person that God wants you to be. Those people who would push you to excel but care enough to pull you back when your heading to the wrong direction. Those people who will tell you the things that you need to hear and not just those things that you would want to hear at times.
The right voices will help you more and more become the person you were destined to be. It takes the right community to help you make the right choices that would save you from a lot of mistakes and heartaches. Build the right connections in your life. We need the right people to push us forward because most of the time we’re always looking back.
Invest on building people.
A path that would always be worth taking is the path of helping and serving other people. If you invest on building people for them to also become the person they are destined to be, that would be a life that would give you joy and fulfillment. Be in the business of serving people. Be in the journey toward helping people excel and I assure you, no matter what career path you choose, it would be the best adventure you would ever take. Be extravagantly generous in giving your time, resources, and energy to the good of those around you!
Now enjoy being twenty-one, but remember, you’re not just a twenty something. You’re a twenty someone!