Too often MBA students advise the incoming class to “land a job as fast as you can so you enjoy the rest of your MBA”, family farewell wishes consist of “we can’t wait for your MBA to be over to have you back”, while some friends and colleagues question your decision to pursue a MBA saying “why are you leaving your stable job”. These phrases have initiated a spark inside of me to express what’s been on my inner mind for a while: why do we rush through things in life? And more importantly, why do we fear the uncertain?

We are often rushed by modern society to leapfrog from one milestone to another; graduate high school, finish university, land our first job, find a partner, start a family, travel to x number of countries by the age of 30, get a promotion, and the list goes on – it sometimes feels like there isn’t enough time to pause and reflect nor enjoy the journey along the way, life has merely become a race to cross off lists. It also seems like we’re expected to have figured out every aspect of our lives by the age of 25. Since graduating university, I’ve had no shortage of interrogations by family and friends as to when I will settle, who I will marry, what career I’ll land, and the dreadful “what’s next” question. My answers of “I’m not sure” or “things will eventually work themselves out” tended to raise eyebrows. I have since learned to pull out my shield and protect myself against the “hurried” “figured out life” mentality, I matured to find pleasure living in the unknown, accepting uncertainty, and moving at my own pace in life.

It is evident that many uncertainties await the class of 19J in their journey. I myself haven’t made my mind up on the clubs I will be joining, the electives I will be taking, nor the campus exchanges I will be undergoing, but the only certainty is: saying goodbye to this whirlwind year will be a regretful event (yes! It seems like I’m already overly attached).

Whether you’re considering applying to MBA programs, are in the application process, have been accepted, or starting your MBA soon (that’s me!), embrace the unknown that awaits you and pause often to reflect on the journey.