In the name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful.
Since it’s mayday, I thought, “why don’t I write about my thoughts on being a worker, trying to earn a living while making my life worth it?”
I finished my masters in October 2016, went back for good after i spent almost 6 years in the UK in November 2016, started working (I mean, serious work here) in January 2017. Hence, it has been almost four months or so? Yep, about four months. So like any other fresh graduates out there, who was once yearning to go out on the ‘real world’ and do ‘real job’, I was too. Except that I didn’t have any clear path on what I really want to do (or maybe most of fresh grads didn’t have any clue too). I remember the days where I wanted to be an architect, because I liked art but being a painter would make my life quite difficult especially if I want to sell my paintings. One has to be truly exceptional to earn a living as a painter. I also remember the days when I wanted to be like my mother, and climb up the career ladder, being a manager in the corporate world and all. Just to show that women have guts too. But who would’ve thought that I would graduate as a social science student, with a masters in IPE. Plus, I’ve always wanted to study abroad, but I never thought I would spend 6 years of my life overseas. But I did. Damage done. LOL no-lah. And I still remember how I rejected JPA’s offer for me to go to Japan because my parents forced me to. LOL. no-lah. It’s a blessings in disguise too, apparently. And here I am, trying to write my thoughts of being a worker.
Being a worker, I thought was the time of one’s life. Go out in the morning, come back home in the evening, and got paid.
“you finally get to go out to the real world”
But it isn’t as easy as it looks like.
They say millenials are lazy. They are too picky. They jump jobs too frequently. But Poswolsky said that millenials generation are simply full of aspirations. They are a generation that are yearning to make a change, wanted to find meaning in what they do, in their workplace, find a work that makes your heart sing, creates impact, and pays rent (or food in Malaysian case). So, commemorating my four months-versary (I doubt that I spelled it right), here are my thoughts on being a worker:
1. Live a life worth living.
As I was about to graduate, I considered applying for jobs in the UK, but I received abah’s text, “ten, balik Msia lah. Farah needs you here.” Like a mutant receiving Professor X’s order, I decided to go back home for good. Gus’ fear in The Fault in Our Stars is oblivion. Mine? is not being able to make my life worth living. Holding on to that aphorism, I took a job that some advised me not to. I was optimistic as I believed what I believe. I had faith in the fight I believed worth fighting. As Poswolsky said, it is crucial to find your purpose. And it’s okay if it keeps on changing. Maybe at the time being, it’s about earning experience, exposure regardless if it’s not related to your degree. Maybe you just want to earn money. Or maybe your purpose now is to go into the corporate world. Maybe it’s to pursue you graduate study, maybe it’s to make people’s life better and do charity work. Or maybe you just want to change the world to be a better place to live in. But make sure to have a purpose as life goes along. And it’s okay if it keeps on changing. It should.
2. Take a risk and jump that cliff.
I ventured into a field that isn’t popular. And perhaps, there is very little market for it locally. I’m not even sure where will it’s going to bring me in the next few years. But I decided to just jump that cliff. It is not a secure work that would promise you a high remuneration but it is something that everyone would willing to do. So, I thought, why don’t give it a try?
3. Always try to put your heart out.
Somewhere along the line, you will get demotivated. Sometimes, that day isn’t just your day. Sometimes you feel like you just not doing things that you like. Or enjoy. It’s normal. Despite that, just try to put your heart out in every work that you do. Some days you will feel useless, or you will feel, “i’m not qualified to this kind of job”, sometimes you’ve been spending hours and hours in your office/cubicle in front of the computer but achieved nothing. It’s normal and despite that, just try to put your heart in everything – if you feel like doing a bad job, make sure you put your heart in doing a bad job. It’s normal.
4.Learning does not end when you graduate.
Maybe if you graduate, with a degree in your hand or a masters certificate scroll, you might feel like you’re equipped with all the skills and expertise to handle the ‘real world’. You’re not. Learning does not end when you graduate. When you enter into the world of work, you actually continuing the process of learning – except that you get paid for it. Sounds cool ite? You might learn different things. How to handle your work (or how not to), how to be innovative and present new ideas, different perspectives, work with people with different perspectives, how to handle you emotional health and all sorts of things.
5. No matter how hard it gets, make sure have time for coffee, cendol or a stroll.
Due to the nature of my work, I decided that I have to make sure that I have time for coffee with friends, family and cendol with my anak-anak usrah. They say that the work you choose is synonymous with the life you choose. But to keep me sane, I know that it’s important to stitch people that matters in my life. Some people might call it escapism, but I call it personality theraphy. Yes, you are subscribed to a life you choose, work revolves around your life but try to make sure that it does not consume you. Especially when the friends that I have at the office are basically zero, I have to make sure that I’m still human at the end of the day and I am still me.
But one good lesson that I am learning is that – you need to have a purpose. And it’s okay if it keeps on changing because it needs to. It’s what keeps you a purposeful human being. As you get older, the troubles and the problems that you face will become more complex and harder. But, life is too short to be unhappy and lost yourself. You can depend all you want on other people, feeling like grass is greener on the other side, but the grass is greener where you water it. Unless, it’s a really bad grass then it might be the time to change. I do not know how far this current life will take me but I am trying to keep my head up high.
Another thing, try not to be afraid of who you are and holding on to your dreams. Selagi tak melanggar syariat, jalani saja! I’ve been holding back on something that I really wanted to do. I guess, I should just start before I turn 50 and said, “I wished I had just submitted those photos and just try.”
p/s: Wrote this on the 1st of May but published it on the 2nd because Kenji decided to bite my laptop cable sampai putus. And, I spent about RM500 in PBAKL. Looks like Ramadhan is going to start a little bit early for me. LOL.
She accompanied me doing work at a coffee shop. The most wonderful question that I received from her besides “u okay yang?” is, “will you be my bridesmaid?”