Sometimes things don’t go as we plan. Life takes us through some unexpected turns on the road. These occurrences can be for better or worse depending on how we manage them.
Education is one of the most important things that everyone should have because I truly believe that knowledge is power. Good education gives you an edge over your peers and makes you confident. After high school or secondary school, some people go to college and then university while some go straight to university. However, sometimes people don’t move on to college or university immediately. Circumstances or personal choices may cause them to take a gap year. Taking a gap year can either be good or bad for you depending on how you make use of your opportunities. If you’re in this situation instead of sitting at home, twiddling your thumbs and wasting your time you can do something useful. You can make this an opportunity of a life time. Here are five things you can try.
Learn a language: French, Spanish, Swahili or Yoruba, whatever!! You can learn. Everyone should be able to speak more than one language because you should always remember that you are not just a citizen of your country but a citizen of the world. So find a qualified teacher, download some audio language books from the internet and start learning. Check out our fab guide to learning another language here!
Travel: You might never get this chance again. See places and meet people while you can. Expose yourself to foreign cultures. The downside to this is that it can be quite expensive but you can make it work. First, if you don’t have a passport get one as soon as possible. If your country is a member of ECOWAS, you can go to all the member countries of ECOWAS without a visa. If you can’t afford to travel by air you can make it a road trip. This will even be more fun because you can stop at interesting places and take pictures.
Acquire useful skills: The emphasis here is on USEFUL. Everything you do during your gap year must be beneficial to you. Is there something you’ve always been interested in but never had the chance to learn? Well, now is the time. Whatever it is, music, a computer course, photography, cooking, mountain climbing, swimming, sailing, art, driving, whatever!! Learn now.
Volunteer: To volunteer, first find out what you’re interested in. Do you like kids, animals, artvor computers? If you like kids you can teach or take care of kids, if you like animals you can work for a wildlife conservation agency, if you like art or computers you can teach people how to do art or use computers. Then find a good agency. I recommend you volunteer abroad if you can afford it because it gives you the chance to help people and travel at the same time. Some volunteer abroad agencies you could check out are GoEco , globalcitizenyear and oneworld365.
Get a job: You should find a job to keep you busy. You could work at a bookstore, a restaurant or like me, you could write on a blog. Just do something that pays or improves your skills; but please don’t do anything illegal or inappropriate.
There are so many things you can do. Don’t just think about doing them, start doing! Challenge yourself, have fun, and discover yourself.