You do not need a goal, you just need to move forward
Once a vivacious couple, Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet become the boring couple they vowed to never be. To feed their appetite, they decide to sell their house and move to Paris to live a boohoo literary life. Initially, both are on board, but once DiCaprio is offered a promotion, he changes his mind. Their neighbors' reaction to their plans also pushes DiCaprio to shelve his dream. What struck me about this film was its focus on abortion, but also the process of realizing a dream.
After watching the film, I asked at what age does dreaming stop? I ask this question because there seems to be a timeline for which you all are supposed to execute all dreams for the rest of your life. You also punish yourself for not being a multimillionaire.
Factually and statistically speaking you are unlikely to be a multimillionaire by the age of 20 like Mark Zuckerberg, so why is he your measuring stick? Realistically speaking, you won't complete all of your dreams and goals by 30? The average lifespan is 80 years old if you stop dreaming by 30 you have 50 years of twiddling your thumbs.
Culturally we've neglected the dreamer. We've neglected the older dreamer and the dreamer who has multiple dreams. We’ve neglected this picture so much that young people are afraid to age without a defined goal. We’ve neglected it so much that we punish older dreamers for daring to try. We punish dreamers for putting their old life to bed and starting anew. They tell us about a new goal, new idea, and a new lifestyle they want to try and we question them, even worse we scoff and judge them. We have created a culture of hyper judgment about the unsettled person and then we are confused when our youth is terrified to age and explore. We are confused when they are afraid of aging without a set and defined a career.
Here is a secret to relieve your anxiety. Most people are unsure of their dream, passion, or goals between 20-30. 18 years is not enough to figure out what you are good at, what you like, or how you can make money from it. If you went to college afterward, those four years are not enough. Figuring out what drives you is a lifetime goal, and most of us work to sustain ourselves then figure out what that spark is later. Most of us stumble around and never find anything, that is ok. That is not a failure. What should be seen as a failure is not attempting life, that is a failure. Failure is not experiencing, trying, living, and loving because of fear. That is your measure for failure, not if you have a goal realized and prosperous by 30. If you are still unsure about how to move, here is a simple phrase for you:
It doesn’t matter what your goal is, any movement is forward, so just start moving.
You do not need to know your goal, plan, or life trajectory right now. You just need to actively move. If you feel good dancing, try a dance class. If you feel good talking, look for avenues for which you can talk like book clubs. If you like to write, write about anything and self-publish that is what movement looks like. There is no deadline for this, you are allowed to be a dreamer for your whole life. Living outside of that is a self-imposed restriction that you should put to rest.