Shifting Perspectives

Greetings from the Ville!

I may have underestimated how cold it would be in Kentucky – the thought that it might not be springtime everywhere didn’t even occur to me until I got off the plane and went, “Wow, it’s freezing!” As I write, last night’s flurry of snow is half-melted on the ground and I am clinging to a cup of green tea just a bit desperately. I’ve been spoiled by the Land of Eternal Summerand Florida seems worlds away right now – and that’s a good thing!

Stepping away from your current situation and getting a change of scenery always changes the way I think. Whether it is the actual, literal change of scenery, or something subtler such as the different energies and vibrations that one’s exposed to while in transit or in a new location, it’s astounding how differently the brain functions while taking a trip. Every chance I get to travel somewhere and take a breather, I wind up finding out new things about life – or else I have radical moments of clarity when I had only been floundering through murky thoughts for the longest time!

The flight from Orlando to Atlanta brought with it some caffeine-deprived musing on what I’m currently doing with my life. Admittedly, lately I’ve been feeling disenchanted with my College Program experience at Disney, due to several factors (in short – loneliness, anxiety about my living situation, long and frustrating days at work and meager paychecks that make wonder, “Is this even worth it?!”) It’s still very early on in my program, and the past week I’ve gone from feeling bad to worse about my decision to move across the country for my college program experience.

It wasn’t much longer after the plane touched down in Louisville that I came to a startling epiphany. Thoughts that had been slowly developing, unrealized, in the back of my mind suddenly burst open!

What I figured out was this: Lately, I feel like I don’t belong at Disney.
But wait! There’s more. It’s not a bad thing, I promise:

I don’t understand the standard corporate 9-5 (or 4pm to midnight, in my case) job. I don’t understand working eight hour days and trying to advance through the company as so many of my coworkers are trying to do. I just don’t see the point of it.

I’m thrilled that the ultimate goal of the company I work for is to make guests happy. I love that goal – I love being happy. I love making people happy. Happiness truly makes the world go round, in my opinion. Yet – at the same time, I feel that there are more important things to apply myself to. I want to make a difference  and here is where I get started, making a difference by contributing to a company that makes people happy. I’m working for the mouse for another four and a half months, which is more than enough time for me to learn all the lessons that I’m meant to learn here.

I want to do the things that I’m passionate about for a living (if you do what you love, you don’t work a day in your life!) and make a difference somehow. Looking at my parents – two awesome people who are doing what they love for a living, or taking steps toward it – it’s no surprise that I can’t adhere to the standard work routine.

(Well, I can – I just don’t enjoy it!)

My questions about the future, which have been floating vague and menacing around my head for some months now, are answered in at least this regard: In the long run, I am not going to forge a Disney career. But this experience will teach me and give me tools that I wouldn’t be able to gain anywhere else.

And now, I’m okay with not fitting in quite right with the rest of the College Program participants, and I’m okay with not especially wanting to extend my College Program until January of 2014 like other people are going to do. I don’t need to be living large with my paychecks, networking within the company, or making friends wherever I go.

This shift in perspective has shown me that I just need to be filling out my toolbox for the rest of my life so I can do what I’m passionate about – and I’m okay with that. I am exactly where I need to be, even if where that is is only temporary.

Until next we meet –

Be happy, be well, and be warm,

~Tessa Grace


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