Graduating is more or less the same as your birthday, or New Year’s Eve. Somewhere deep inside, you expect it’ll go with a bang, something big and spectacular. That you will feel different than before, suddenly. In reality, graduating looks like a perfectly normal e-mail in your inbox, not too long nor too short, with the message: congratulations, you’re graduated. And that’s it. Chances are big you’ll read the e-mail in the middle of a busy train, at a moment you were actually busy doing something else, and it’s awkward to show your excitement. So you bite your lip and do a small dance inside your head, and that’s it. Suddenly you’re 22, graduated, and you have no clue what your next step will be. So far my disillusionment.

It’s such a cliche: the ‘black hole’ after graduating. Not that I’m in one right now, but still being graduated causes quite some thinking and talking with friends. After a short search across the internet, it turns out that of course we’re not the only ones with the idea that our untroubled lives are over now, and there’s a new grown-up live waiting for us, filled with responsibilities. So is this really the moment I have to grow up? I still have to run to catch my train sometimes, and also can eat a whole bar of chocolate in one instance and have regret the second after. I feel far from grown-up..

Apparently I am a true millennial: I have dreams, ambitions, set goals and demand things from myself. There is a lot that I like, and a lot that I would like to do. But how to ensure that you can do the things you want to do, once you’re thrown into that “real world”? How to stay true to yourself, and make money at the same time..?

I want everything and I want it now. Isn’t that the short summary of being a millennial? Last week I found the podcast called Millennial, and I fell in love with it. Megan Tan, just graduated and with the dream of being a radioproducer, tells us about her post-graduate life and the struggles she faces. For example: what if your boyfriend becomes succesful, while you are still doing side-jobs to make at least some money?

In episode 4, Nothing To Lose, Megan tells us about the process of making her podcast. Beforehand she had no idea how big hear podcast would become. She saw it more as a means to improve her skills in the area she wanted to work in eventually: radio. Still it had cost her a few months of frustration and procrastination before she eventually did make that first episode. That’s why Megan asks herself a question that sounds somewhat familiar to myself: “Why do we become our worst enemies when it comes to pursuing the things we actually want?”

Why is it that we keep procrastinating and making up excuses, thereby letting our fear of failing lead us?

Well, don’t expect any answers from me, or from Megan. We don’t have them, all we’re doing is trying what we can. But do expect, at least from the podcast, an inspiring and motivating story of a young woman who did push through, despite herself, and learnt a great deal from it. What I took away from this podcast is how a series of small steps can bring you so much closer to your end goal. And that every small step that does succeed, provides you with a little bit more confidence in yourself to make a next step. Something I called the golden rule of setting smaller goals.

There are enough things I want to do, this year, in my lifetime. Regarding the coming semester: interning at a cool NGO, learning new things, developing myself further creatively via the blog, and just doing a lot of fun stuff. There are new travel plans for the beginning of 2018. You’ll read all about it at this blog. Because if there’s 1 thing I’ve decided for myself, it’s that I will stay a dreamer.

Link to the Millennial podcast episode I talked about: