(This might be a little dramatic, but…) On September 6, 2014, at about 7am at a hostel in Berlin, Germany, I woke up with the surreal and terrifying realization that “I don’t want a career in advertising anymore”. Cue quarter life crisis. I don’t know how/why exactly this epiphany came to me in my sleep that night, but I was graduating in almost exactly eight months and my degree was in Creative Advertising. So what the heck do I do? Obviously, I had to figure it out right then and there, so I turned on my laptop and proceeded to research various careers and jobs and who knows what else until the rest of my friends woke up a few hours later.
Over the next three months, I woke up with a new life plan just about every few days. Maybe I could become a travel photographer! Maybe I’ll backpack South America this summer and another epiphany (with an actual plan this time) will hit me! Maybe I can just take off and travel until the government comes after me for not paying my student loans! Do you see a theme here??
Long story short, I kept coming back to the two basics that I needed after graduation: Time and money. Time to figure out what I want to do with my life, and money to a) sustain me and b) start to pay off my hefty student loans that were hitting six months after graduation. I also decided that I needed to leave the country again after graduation, because isn’t that where everybody tends to “find themselves”? I settled on the idea of doing a working holiday in New Zealand. That would buy me up to one year (perfect, because my boyfriend Michael graduates one year after me) to work in a different country and travel/meet new people from all over the world.
So as I got back to America in December 2014, that’s what I set my sights on, and I was willing to do just about anything to make it happen.