There are so many types of pressure we go through in our lives. The pressure to make more money. To find someone we love. To watch what we eat. To do better in school. To feel like we belong. To aspire for something greater. Or to do what we believe in.
These things can go from the incredibly huge, aspirational pressures of achieving big milestones in your life - like deciding where you’re going to live if you only have a few weeks left to decide. They can also be much shorter and a bit simpler - like writing an email to a client for a project at work, just to keep things going. But even through these differences, pressures can carry heavy emotional weight that ripples through everything.
I remember searching for a job a few years ago, and essentially relying on emails to decide my fate. Especially when I was just a few weeks away from having to leave Canada and try somewhere else, the pressure was pretty intense. I thought I was about to lose the relationship I had, the people I met, and the life I built there. And I wasn’t sleeping or eating very well. All I needed was an interview - somewhere, anywhere. And I wasn’t really getting anything. Since I was fresh out of school, searching for this job was my job - and even though my friends and family were encouraging me that I’d find something, my faith was waning thin.
When I changed my outlook and thinking was when I stopped feeling such immense pressure. Up until a few weeks before I got an offer, I stopped spending all day trying to find a golden opportunity that I missed looking the day before. I was applying for creative positions - so I started doing my own projects, and got out of my apartment to exercise every morning. I only looked for new jobs at night, and only for about an hour. The rest of the time - that was my life and my well-being, and I wasn’t going to kill it for false hopes.
The interesting thing was that I got more replies when I started doing my own projects. And when I started getting interviews, they were interested in those things much more than what I had spent so much time polishing to show them before.
I eventually found a job, and going through that experience really changed how I act under pressure. Things really went much better after I started believing in what I was doing - not feeling like I needed to do these things to keep on with my life. But once I started living under pressure in a different way, I knew that my life could go on. That even if I didn’t stay in Canada, I’d be able to figure it out somewhere else.