Best life advice: Do new things, especially hard ones!

Do What You Love.

It’s classic advice that nearly every college student has received. To me, the question always gave rise to sarcastic inner commentary like, “So what? Just make a career out of eating chocolate cake?”


On the other end of the spectrum, the inquiry can leave young people frazzled, mentally sifting through a long list of banal possibilities to find the answer that will pacify their nosy relatives.

I have been searching a long time for what I love, for my niche, my people... Never escaping the feeling that I was slightly out of place. I won’t deny that, at times, I lost my conviction that love would come. Like one bad date too many, another awkward club meeting had me about to swear off men… social gatherings forever.

And just like those corny romance movies, one smile and a few words from my friends at Toastmasters and I was hooked.

This pose is mandatory.

Just imagine they’re exploding.

Tonight, I did something that was strange. I met up with a group of people I’d never met, and I clapped for them… cried with them… and laughed at them (and made them laugh at me too!). When I entered that room, full of people older, more educated, and obviously better speakers that me, it did NOT feel like love.

It felt scary. It was nerve-wracking. It was like a fleeting possibility, and who knew if it would materialize. It was hard. Raising my hand for an improvisation exercise felt like voluntary insanity. But trying things is the only way we can ever find what we love. The more you try, the closer you get to the good life. The biggest lesson I’ve learned abroad is this:

It’s okay if things are hard for you sometimes. Things are hard for everyone.

What’s important is that you do them anyway.


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