Career Stuff, Personal posts

One Direction (on focus and choosing your path)

The last couple of days, I’ve been feeling a bit rubbish. To be more specific; I’ve felt both tired and restless, had on and off headaches, and felt down and unmotivated. I thought it might be a cold coming on, but I’ve not displayed any other symptoms. After a busy couple of day, I figured maybe I was just a little tired, so I cut myself some slack and had some ‘me time’. However that didn’t really improve my mood. After talking it out with a close friend, I began to realise the problem. I’ve been so busy throwing myself into so many different things, and trying to do them all, that I’ve become overwhelmed and don’t have any focus.

I should give myself some credit here; I have a much better idea of the direction I want to go in than I did, say six months ago. In fact it was around that time when I started to realise that I want to move in the youth and charity sector circles. However the problem is there are so many great programmes, initiatives, websites, and organisations out there, and I don’t quite know where to begin. I’ve made some choices; becoming a part of Young Women’s Trust, Youth Employment UK, and Team V, as well as getting more involved with Young Carers in Focus (and landing my amazing internship which starts in a week and a half!) but I’m constantly finding new things I want to get involved with. It’s really exciting and encouraging that there are so many programmes out there, but it’s also a little overwhelming. I want to take part in so many things, and I know I physically and mentally can’t, but that’s just left me with an ever-growing list of bookmarked pages in my ‘project grad’ folder, and an increasing sense of failing as deadlines pass by in the haze of my indecision.

The thing is, I don’t want to be stuck here. The more I think about it, the more I realise how I got here. It started off with my big ‘aha’ moment when I had to quit my unpaid marketing internship last year. After feeling sorry for myself and watching Netflix for approximately half a day, I was away planning what to do next. I researched far and wide to find organisations to get involved with and schemes to apply to. I made lists, and folders of bookmarks, and even more lists. I sent emails, filled in online forms, followed Twitter accounts, and signed up to newsletters. I needed to do as much as I could at that point to try and find my next steps. In full on ‘planning mode’ I was soaking up all the information, and mentally cataloging all the organisations I was interested in. However now that I’m further down the line; an ambassador, advisory panel member, young leader, and I have my upcoming job, I need to dial it back and focus. I’m still stuck in planning mode, when I need to move on to doing.

I’m not going to lie, I’m struggling with this. I love going through blogs and tweets, looking for opportunities and reading interesting articles. What I’m not so great at is collating all of that down, choosing what to focus on, and taking action. On this blog I often tell you personal stories of things I’ve struggled with, and then offer solutions or advice on how to deal with them. However I’m pretty good at not taking my own advice (it’s so easy to talk to yourself differently than you do your friends). So today I’m admitting that I am having problems, and reaching out to you guys. In the very near future I’m meeting up with my friend who I talked to earlier, and we’re both going to plan out our focuses and how to DO things, instead of just writing longer lists of things we want to do.

Do you have any top tips for finding focus when you have lots of options? Should I just go in One Direction? Did you think this blog was going to be about Zayn?

Answer in the comments, and have a great day wherever you are!


3 thoughts on “One Direction (on focus and choosing your path)”

  1. Jenny, I love this – I’m totally in this scenario as well, part of so many things whilst also trying to plan my life once I’m at uni – and I keep thinking I’m forgetting to savour the time I’m in now! Keep at it – looking forward to seeing you this weekend 🙂 xx


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