High Expectations, Major Letdowns

No one prepares you for the life you’re going to encounter once you are no longer in school.  When I say school, I’m referring to your entire undergraduate career. As a child you’re taught that going off to college and getting your degree is a way toward a life of stability. But what you quickly learn is that major adjustments will take place as well as letdowns once school is over. Some obvious adjustments are not waking up when you want to and going to sleep whenever. I’m still thinking about undergraduate school where I would sleep until noon are go to bed at 2:00 a.m. Who cares, doesn’t really matter because what’s that saying again when you’re in college, “C’s get degrees.” Grades are another really important discussing point. Grades in school won’t matter once you leave college. No one cares that you spent the bulk of your collegiate career on the Dean’s List or toiled late nights in the library studying. I have never been on an interview where I was asked how many hours per night did I study. Not once did the employer ask for my GPA in school or if I even paid attention in class. The fact of the matter is that no one really cares because you’ll be lumped into one big working space with everyone else.

We all would like to believe that the late night party goers and the late night book worms differ in success after school. The reality is that most likely an A+ student will be working along side the same guy who was vomiting in the bushes on a Friday night. The loose girl who was known for hooking up with random athletes on campus will be the coworker of a female whose waiting until marriage to have sex. How come no one tells you this when you’re going off to college? How come no one explains to you how little your college education will be brought up in a casual conversation? Don’t get me wrong, if you went to one of America’s top tier schools: Harvard, Princeton, Brown, Yale, Columbia, Stanford, Duke, etc., employers will be creaming in their pants. But the facts are that the greater percentage of students won’t get into these institutions. So what’s left out there for the rest of us that didn’t get into one of America’s top institutions?

Is this the real America? A nation where we are cultivating students and prepping only a chosen few to run things, while the rest just twiddle their fingers or slave for a living. Looing at the outside in, college is this place where you walk through the doors and receive this aw-inspiring knowledge that you can conquer the world. Only you’re taught how to shut-up and follow orders. So all that challenging the theories of your professor won’t work on a job. All the times you were asked to contribute your input is no longer needed after college. If you’re lucky you might be asked to sit in and listen to the more important people talk. These are some major letdowns when you think about all the high expectations in life. Not to say you shouldn’t have high expectations, but you’re about to embark on not only a journey, but a life game called, “Playing Ball.”

Playing ball is not something you can easily teach or be taught, it comes with life experience. Playing ball has never been one of my strong points in life. To me, something doesn’t make sense I tend to questions, which makes me a bad ball player. In this world a lot of times you have to play along to get along. For example, I had an employer ask me about a method on a job that I was “comfortable” using. It caught me off-guard because I wasn’t using a method of comfort yet one of the rules I’ve always used. After she walked away, I was so frustrated because she framed the question in a manner that would render a response she wanted. These are the types of mind games no one explains to you. So what do you do, just shut-up and play ball, they’re right and you’re wrong. If I admit I’m wrong I have a job, if not, out the door you go. But admitting incompetence means affecting your next job opportunities. So you have to admit enough to give the employer what they want, but not to the point of losing out on open doors later.

So as you can see all the principles you’re brought up with as a child go out the window when you step into society. No one gives a damn about your outlook on life. It’s all about going to work, do enough not to get fired, come home, eat, sleep, and do it all over again. Rest on Saturday, then prepare for Monday work week on Sunday, and that’s the life parents insist upon their kids following. Not this high hopes future of being a rock star, playing professional sports, receiving an Academy Award for a box office movie, being the next great best selling novelists, or running for president of the United States. The majority of day-to-day life involves 8 to 10 hours of shutting the hell up and do as you’re told + a lot phoniness + plenty of ass kissing – the sacrificing of happiness equaling out to what your parents wanted you to become. Well not me, I am following my dreams, no better yet my passion. I can, no I will be the next great Steven Tyler, Michael Jordan, Ernest Hemingway, Steven Spielberg, or Barack Obama. Just as soon as I quite my 8 to 10 and find myself a good 4 to 6.

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