I continue to surprise myself in 2015.

I was accepted to grad school. Even applying was an achievement, considering the steps it required: studying for tests, gathering portfolio pieces, and obtaining recommendations from professors and professionals. I already have done so much in 2015: I am now ordained and have wed some of my best friends, I left the country on a cruise, I’m in the middle of building a garden in my back yard, I’ve discovered my new favorite brewery in Kansas, I’ve been admitted to grad school. I have already planned two big trips across the country with friends.

And I accepted a new job a Swanson Russell.

After Tuesday, I will be leaving the comfort of the Wick alumni center walls and enter the world of advertising agencies. I have never been drawn to demanding lifestyle agencies portray, but surprisingly, I’ve never felt more comfortable about it.

Only two months ago I had a conversation with a friend about the reasons I wouldn’t switch jobs for another three years. Between my health uncertainties, my endless medical bills and deductibles, and being solely responsible for my mortgage, it’s scary to think about stepping out into the unknown.

The events leading up to my acceptance are nothing short of fate, and as I’ve learned, coincidences don’t happen. I believe there are greater forces as work, if you are open to seeing and hearing the signs. From the timing of the first contact with me, to the following weeks of anecdotes driving me to evaluate my professional status, I was continually guided back to this position. I consulted friends who had worked with my future coworkers. Conversations with unknowing colleagues answered questions they didn’t know I had. One in particular was initiated by me sharing an update about my garden. Their response was a story about a patio project he finished, only later realizing he needed to switch jobs for a fresh perspective. I asked if he thought he made the right decision. He answered, ‘with out a doubt.’

These things I thought I’d push off for years are coming so easy to me right now.

A couple of friends know how I’ve been obsessing about a recently purchased CD, spurred by a concert I went to. I will listen to it repeatedly for hours at work, and every trip I take in my car. I realized that the lyrics are echoing my recently found philosophy, with some of my favorite lyrics being: the thought of arriving, kind of feels like dying  |  If we get to see tomorrow, I hope it’s worth all the wait  |  Gathering new strength from sorrow, I’m glad to feel alive  |  construction getting louder, paving over yesterdays  |  I pause and take a breathe and bow and let the chapter end

Not only this, but the title of the CD has become my 2015 mantra: YES! <<check out some videos>>

The very beginning of this year, I was consoling a friend who has been feeling lost in life. My advice was to start saying ‘yes’ to opportunities, and trying things out. Even if he hates it, he is still one step closer to finding what he loves.

Some of the biggest hesitations I still have about switching jobs really boil down to the benefits I receive. Particularly, the retirement plan. After the initial offer, I called my friend to soundboard my thoughts, and realized that I can’t make my decisions on where I visualize myself in 40+ years dictate where I am right now. I reopened this conversation yesterday with her husband, with him echoing this thought: there is so much life you will experience between right now, and in 20 years when I am his age. So say yes, jump in, and start trying it out now.

One of the stories from cancer camp that has stuck with me, was from a friend whose son died of cancer. Two weeks prior, he purchased new climbing shoes. He lived life 100% until it was taken. Sometimes, you have to make choices for yourself, no matter how unorthodox or nonsensical they may be. You do them for you.

Maybe I will learn that I love the agency life. Maybe I will learn how much I hate the agency life, and realize how special my time at the alumni association really was. Either way, I will be making a step to a new perspective on myself, where I came from, and where I’m going. I will be one step closer to finding where I should be.

2012 was my year of tearing myself down and exploring who I am. 2013 was my year of learning to advocate and testing my strength. 2014 was my year of practicing contentment and being at peace with who I am.

2015 is a year of advancing who I can be, and saying ‘yes!’ to new experiences.


Author: Clarissa A.

The older I get, the less I know.

One thought on “YES!”

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