Passion & Purpose

This digital dialogue is often focused on integrating hip hop and popular culture with the landscape of life, yet, today were going to switch the conversation up a bit.

How to find your purpose:

Many people would say, one’s life goal should be to be able to provide for your life and leave the world better than you found it. As an incoming college senior, the decision of what I will do with my life after this monumental experience, is a challenge. During the 21 years of living on this planet, I have been subjugated to academic institutions in terms of learning and pushing forward to my next life’s journey. As my schooling journey comes to and end, I am challenged with the heavy decision of : WHAT IS NEXT?  

As simple of a choice this may seem to some, it has been weighing down on me for the past couple of weeks. I have watched my senior friends graduate and continue onto their next journey in full-time positions within their respective fields, and rightfully so, I am fearful that the goals I have set out for myself will be just dreams. Now, some people that know me will say “Girl, you have nothing to worry about”, but in reality I am very worried. How will I be able to project my career goals, skills, and previous experience onto the human resource officers within the various companies I will be applying to?How will I be able to gather up who I am as a person onto a resume and cover letter? This is the task left before me.

One thing that I have figured out, that I STRONGLY urge other college students to do is to FIND YOUR PASSION & PURPOSE. This may seem like a cliche statement, but I promise that understanding and determining these things will allow you to align yourself with missions and companies that value, appreciate, and dedicate themselves to the same things that you do. As an employee and valued member of a company’s team, you want to feel like you are making contributions to the overall landscape and success of that portion of society. There’s nothing worse than collecting a paycheck and not being proud of the work you’re producing. More specifically, within the entertainment industry, for example, it may seem like the there is an “every man for themselves” kind of attitude, but as long as you focus on passion and purpose then your life will be fulfilled and worth while.

As you matriculate throughout college, here are three pieces of advice I would lend to college students as a they aim to find their life’s passion and purpose:

Figure out what gets you out of bed every morning

When you wake up in the morning, what is something that becomes a daily routine other than hygiene and getting dressed? Do you listen to music? Do you turn on the television to watch the latest news? Do you read up on the tabloids and turn to a platform that allows you to express your feelings? Usually, when you have integrated certain facets of society into your everyday routine, they become passion filled and purposeful in your life’s journey. Don’t ignore those signs. For example, as an elementary and middle school child, I used to watch 106&Park, read WordUp magazine, and constantly debate with my friends about music and who was my “celebrity crush” at that particular time. Fast forward about 10 years later, I am now infatuated with the inter-workings, and structure of the music industry and how it influences and embraces popular culture. I listened to that instinct and have found so much joy in being enthralled with what music brings to the overall scope of life. Determine what you can’t live without.

Get involved with different activities that will allow you to figure out what you do/don’t like

No matter what college/ university you attend, there are opportunities for you to get involved in a multitude of activities, whether it be the black student union, the film organization, public relations organization, or marketing association. Join those organizations, and use those resources to figure out what you would love to do every day of your life. If one of the organizations involves planning events, use that experience to either propel your career or mark it as something that you have no interest in. The good thing about college is that you have the chance to join and quit organizations freely. It allows you to be able to define, enrich, or enhance your skills that will carry throughout your life. Organizational experience is also a great way to spruce up your resume and gain tangible skills that you will be able to transfer into a professional working environment.

Don’t be afraid to change your mind 

Depending on the college or university you attend, the first year of college is set aside for you to take general education courses. You may have a general idea of what subject you would like to identify and focus on, but this is the year to dibble and dabble in other courses that interest you. Take this first year, and possibly your second year to take those African-American culture focused classes, the technical or proficiency based courses, or the classes that will bring you a few steps closer to that degree. However, along this journey, allow yourself to change the course of action and industry interest, get acclimated with other parts of the University, and find your passion. If you start school as an engineering major, then sophomore year you lose interest and purpose within that field, switch! Don’t hold yourself back trying to stick to the status quo. When I entered Howard University three years ago,  I knew that I wanted to work in the entertainment industry in some capacity, so I settled for majoring in TV/Film, however I soon realized that I didn’t want to necessarily be directly behind the camera, so I switched to Media Management, a more business approach to the entertainment and media industry. No matter what other people tell you, allow yourself to be flexible and content with the decisions you make. If changing your major, sets you back a year or two from your graduation date, so be it! At the end of the day, you have to be happy, and content with the passions and purpose you have for your life.

With purpose and passion comes happiness and life fulfillment. As you matriculate throughout your journey all the trials and tribulations that you go through and experience will be worth while because at the end of the day, you will know that whatever it is has a special place in your heart.

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