Happy Labor Day, friends! Hopefully, you’ve spent today lounging around instead of laboring away, especially since it is the last unofficial day of summer. That’s right! For so many of you, today is likely the day before school resumes and vacations end. It’s likely the last day you’ll get to sleep in and spend more hours than you’d like to admit on the couch binge-watching your favorite series. And it’s likely the last day you’ll get to swim in the pool before it closes for the year. Today marks a lot of endings and quite a number of beginnings, namely the start of a new chapter in your life. Whether you’re going back to school or heading back to work, this next phase brings with it a host of excitement and maybe even anxiety. Just getting closer and closer to my own first day of graduate school, I can’t help but feel those same first day/next step jitters. I think it’s normal when you enter the unknown–a new space filled with some new people, new challenges, and new celebrations, all of which you can’t even fathom. It can be frustrating, uncomfortable, and maybe even scary. Maybe you’ll start to doubt yourself and your ability. Question whether or not you belong. Wonder whether or not you can handle the rigor, the professors, the peers, the colleagues, the boss, the work itself. I know I have.
The thing is, though, while we can’t see into the future, while we don’t know exactly what we’re getting ourselves into, we can know for certain that we were chosen for a reason. We can say for certain that someone saw something in us that is worth cultivating, worth celebrating, worth believing. Once we trust that and believe in ourselves, then we give others permission to do the same. Once we have faith in our own talents and a willingness to be challenged, to learn, to grow, then we can get to work and move mountains. It’s so easy to get inside our heads, doubt ourselves and the process, but doing so makes life unbearably difficult. Furthermore, it hinders us from living up to and exceeding our own potential. It prevents us from fulfilling our purpose. So, instead of taking the easy route and allowing our doubts to take over, I challenge you to do what’s hard and believe in yourself. Believe that you can handle it. Believe that the acceptance letter you received earlier this year is just one indication that you are more than capable. Believe that the job offer you received is just one small yet significant sign that you are in the right place, at the right time, and able to do what you were called to do. And whatever hiccups come along the way– and they will– remember, it’s just another hurdle, another small mountain that you will overcome.
I know you can handle it. You just have to believe it, too!