After I finished school, almost ten years ago now, I took a gap year between starting university and what I call “starting my serious adult life.” I’m still waiting for that serious adult life to start, by the way. Any day now. I felt that having a break from study and the pressures of exams and assignments would make me more determined to kick those career goals – even if I wasn’t sure what those goals were just yet.
Tricia Taormina from The Huffington Post wrote an article on Gap Years and simple reasons why they are important. It made me wonder whether we all need a break from study or work every five or so years to re-engerise ourselves and make us remember what matters. Of course I know this isn’t possible for a lot of people but it’s nice to dream.
Why consider taking a gap year?
“Gap time is meant to revitalise your mind – to avoid the burnout that can accompany immediately taking on more intense coursework”
Many teenagers and young people travel to live abroad for a year, sometimes two. Some people move for work. Others for love. I’ve never moved away from Sydney but I admire those who do and make a real go of it. I’m very close with my family and friends and love having my network. I like stability in my life; I am a Capricorn after all. I’m a little too practical for my own good sometimes and I believe this makes me miss certain opportunities.
I commit to long leases on rentals, I have a cat who I adore and I have a lot of stuff that has accumulated in my home over the past four years I’ve lived alone. I literally can’t pick up my whole life as I know it and throw caution to the wind. Although I’d love to. I fantasize about it. I know that if I travel to Boston or NYC I won’t come home. And that’s an expensive plane ride to bring all my stuff over.
I mean, I could start from scratch but that’s terrifying. What happens if I make the wrong decision? Or if I get ill and there’s no one around to help me? Or if I’m simply lonely. Well, I get lonely at home some weeks and I do get sick and take care of myself just like a regular person. But I do wonder sometimes what am I so scared about.
When people announce their engagements, weddings or pregnancies I’m genuinely happy for them yet I have this anxious feeling in my stomach like it’s all happening too fast for me. It’s not even about me! I get that same feeling when people say they are moving to London for two years and are applying for a visa. Really? Are you sure? Two years is a long time. It’s not really, I know.
Did you take a gap year? Or if you could where would you go?
Rose Russo has written 56 posts.
Rose is a freelance writer, blogger and self confessed chocoholic who could quite easily live on a diet of turkish delight and English breakfast tea. She loves the fast paced nature of online media but sometimes feels like she’s the only member of Gen Y who still gets excited to pick up the newspaper on weekend mornings. If anyone has a Sportsgirl addiction cure please let her know [I may be on a first-name basis at my local store] She also writes a weekly column focusing on relationships, friendship and life stuff on her blog at The Budding Rose
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