Society puts a lot of pressure on students; each one of us expects a lot from you- they want us to perform brilliantly in our examinations, high paying job and a reputed job. These expectations being very flattering are also immensely anxiety-inducing. We are not perfect; we all have our flaws and every day we are trying to get to know ourselves better. Why is the definition of a perfect human-being is someone who has his/her life sorted from the beginning? For us, it is a very unrealistic thing to even begin with. We are constantly evolving as individuals; we are not who we used to be five gap years before, we have changed and so is our preferences and the perspective to look at things.
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The endless expectations our parents, friends and teachers have from us is burdening and pressure. To be honest, our life runs in a very fast pace, sometimes it becomes hard for us to grasp how quickly everything around us is moving and changing. Therefore, often we lose touch with our realities and that is completely okay. Our society expects us to choose what we want to do with our lives, that is a hard decision, right? We have to choose something that is going to sustain us for the rest of our lives, they also expect us to be stern and confident about of decisions- it is not encouraged to change our career path. The environment that has been created by our society is very problematic, the pressure that they put upon is extremely immense and not welcoming.
Today, we are going to have a take upon normalization of ‘Gap Years’ and students taking their own time and pace while choosing a career for themselves. We are going to talk about how these things are essential and even beneficial, therefore, it must not be looked down upon and we must try our best to encourage them rather than criticizing them.
Contrary to the popular opinion here, gap years are actually well defined programmes offered to students in foreign. They are encouraged to take gap years by their universities. In abroad, especially in United States and United Kingdom- the curriculum universities follow is very inflexible, therefore, giving immense opportunities to students to take out time for their own interest. These students have time to travel, do various internships and jobs, take alternative education programs, and apprenticeship- taking out time for themselves and trying to figure out their interest by applying it actually helps them understand their future career options better. Unfortunately, in India gap years are looked down upon, students who take gap years are considered to be unserious and extremely rich. We all need time to figure things out for ourselves; when you spend so many hours literally deciding what you want to have for dinner, we are talking about our career here and choosing wisely is always better than choosing hurriedly.
Gap years are essential to gain life skills that are important for us to build, in order to have a wholesome life. Gap year gives us a lot of exposure to things we could never have made out time for if we were studying under the inflexible education system of our country. Our country’s education system, in this aspect, is not very compromising- these traditional methods of teaching and delivering knowledge would never prepare us for the outside world challenges and experience. These are the things we need to develop by exposing ourselves to the real world, but, unfortunately we are never given a chance to develop any insight about how the outside world works. It is important to get out of our comfort zones, by doing that we also understand ourselves and the world better without any pressure.
Gap years provide us with diverse range of opportunities; we take time for ourselves and the things we love, we test our potential by doing many internships and jobs. We also polish our skills by taking up different diploma courses, in order to, master a skill. Gap years makes us ready for the outside world, it also gives us a chance to be independent and make our own decisions. The entire process is extremely fulfilling, therefore, improves our motivation and engagement. We know that these challenges would help us understand ourselves better, it makes us responsible and wiser. Moreover, the level of maturity one gains from gap years in immense- it gives us a sense of perspective about things. Besides giving us a control and balance over our decisions, it also gives us plenty of rooms to make money by doing different internships. This financial growth allows us to contribute to our future educational programs. Therefore, if you’re in a confusion, there is no need to hurry and have pressure. You can take your own time with it.