May 21, 2008  •  In Career, Personal

5 Pieces of Advice for Recent Graduates, Part 2

Part 1: The world doesn’t owe you anything.

2. It’s never too late.

One of my good friends is beautiful and brilliant (and I’m not just saying that because she’s my friend). Not only is she so gorgeous that a well-known, national brand wanted her as a model, she’s also one of the smartest people I know.

A couple of years ago, after working her ass off in a prestigious pre-law program, she was accepted to Stanford Law School and we were all so very proud of her.

That’s when she announced she would be attending culinary school instead.

Say what?

She then explained to me that food was, and always has been, her passion. The only reason she had pursued law school was to land a stable, respected, well-paying job so that she can save enough money to follow this passion.

“Then I thought…why should I wait? Why not now?

Fast forward a few months, when she was well into her studies in culinary school. It’s tough work, she said. And undoubtedly very intimidating and quite scary to have made such a change. However, she radiated with happiness and I knew she had made the right choice.

She explained to me that her class was full of these types of people. Hedge fund managers. IT guys. Even stay at home moms. All who had realized that it’s never too late to pursue your passion.

To be realistic, not everyone can make a living from their passions. However, just pursuing it as a side job or even as a hobby can do wonders for your health and happiness.

My father is a great artist and won numerous awards in his younger days. However, his family was so poor that he had to drop out of high school to help ends meet. There was no glimmer of hope for art school at all.

Decades later, he has started to draw again. He doesn’t have time to do much, but when he does I can see the calm fulfillment in his eyes.

My mother has always admired pottery. So last year she decided to take up pottery classes at the local Korean community center. Some of the pieces she makes are so ugly that I don’t know what to say to her when she proudly shows them to me. But I can’t deny that they make her happy.

There are always a million reasons not to do something. But are they so cumbersome that you cannot live a happy, fulfilled life?

Next up… 3. Make the best of it.

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