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Reminding Myself That Life Is What I Make It

December 12, 2011

Register for our webinar with Peter Buffett, Emmy award-winning composer and NY Times best-selling author, on Dec 15th at 3:30 pm EST. One lucky attendee will receive an autographed copy of his book, Life is What You Make It. Sign up here.

In Peter Buffett’s new book, Life is What You Make It, he poses the question, “Which will you choose: the path of least resistance or the path of potentially greatest satisfaction?” As an Alum, I hope that you’re choosing the latter! Isn’t that the reason why we choose to serve the communities around us? There is great satisfaction in knowing that the work we’re doing makes us feel great and that it is creating lasting benefits for many generations to follow.

In addition, the process of service and creating that change is something we value, as all that hard work is a symbol for pride we have in our country in making it better for its citizens.

I remember when my service year ended a few months back, there was a bit of anxiety about what was in store for me next. It’s not an unfamiliar story for our network of 700,000 alumni. We’ve dedicated 10-12 months of service, thousands of hours of service, and now, we’re figuring out, “What’s next?” The next stage in our life story can be a bit daunting, especially if you’re like me with AmeriCorps being your one of your first working experiences out of school. Instead of being bogged down by the uncertainty of my future, I embraced the experience as an opportunity for growth.

Now that my term is over, how could I use what I’ve learned in service and apply it to my professional endeavors? I began reflecting on my year of service and saw how my experience could be applicable to various job settings. From marketing to program coordinator positions, I learned so much in service – all I needed to do was find ways to sell my experience to employers. I knew what my end goal was and learning to work with the challenges in job hunting was as rewarding as nailing the job I wanted (hint: working for Alums!)

In Peter Buffett’s new book, he emphasizes on honoring work ethic and valuing the process vs the payoff, as doing the former will open up more doors for fulfillment. The journey of working towards a goal can be as, if not even more, rewarding than reaching your final destination. Let’s be real, things don’t always go our way, and no matter how “Fail-proof” our plans are, something always happens that can set us off track. However, if we can view challenges and surprises as opportunities for growth, we still have lots to gain from our experiences.

As Alums of National Service, we know that when we see problems arise in the environment, education, etc, instead of complaining about things, we roll our sleeves up and are proactive about making something good come out of the situation. “Getting Things Done” has always been our life’s motto!

If you’re an Alum who’s looking to make that next big step in life, whether it be personal or professional, or just looking for that extra inspiration to get things done in your life, join us for our free webinar with Peter Buffett on Dec 15th at 3:30 pm EST.

He’ll be talking about his book, Life is What You Make It, and answering questions for Alums about what to expect as we make our next big moves in life. Plus, one lucky attendee will win an autographed copy of the book! Register here.

Alums, which will you choose: the path of least resistance or the path of potentially greatest satisfaction?

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