Taking a gap year can be a liberating yet scary experience. For one of the first times, you are being exposed to an extended period of time that you are fully liable to fill with your own goals and achieve them with little guidance. How do you know what to be doing to live this gap year to your fullest? Listed below are different ideas to help direct and inspire you to fulfill your gap year goals.
Volunteering is a great way to spend your time while fulfilled with a sense of pride in yourself. It allows you to offer tremendous help to people and organizations around you by simply offering your time. Volunteering for programs you care about, whether it is the homeless, the environment, school safety, etc. will give you a sense of accomplishment and may inspire you to take more action in these endeavors. Volunteering can also help give you guidance as to what you may want to do with your future. Volunteering your time can get your foot in the door, meet new people and try something new out for free, while also making a difference in someone’s life.
If you are taking a gap year off from school to learn what it is you want to study, internships are a great way to put yourself in the workplace and get to know if that lifestyle resonates with you. Many internships are not incredibly demanding, so if you have the ability and time, consider applying to a few. Choose ones that are different from each other and will give you the experience you are looking for. With that being said, do your research. Know how much time the internship will want from you, know exactly what you will be doing and what they will be expecting from you. Having an abundance of information will make you feel more comfortable with your decision, especially after the internship has concluded. Not to mention, internships look great on your resume!
Unfortunately, volunteering and many internships do not offer payment. Although they are an amazing experience, working a job that pays may be more crucial. Perhaps finding a job that gives you the opportunities to explore potential fields of study may be available to you. However, if they are not, working during your gap year and saving the money you make will benefit you greatly when you do decide to go to college. Saving money during your gap year will give you the freedom at college to focus more on your studies without worrying about work.
Traveling during a gap year broadens your horizons. Traveling grants you the possibility of meeting new and inspiring people, learning about different cultures and becoming more independent. Traveling is a beautiful way to become independent and adapt to change. By doing so you will get to know yourself better and grow into the person you are meant to be, which will ultimately help you later in life when deciding who you aspire to be. Traveling can be expensive but there are many cheap options for gap year students. There are volunteer programs that offer you housing and travel expenses in return for work or help such as WWOOF, https://wwoof.net/ You can also consider moving somewhere and working in a different country or state. You can possibly even find a job online so you can make money while living a nomadic lifestyle!
All of these options are guaranteed to make your gap year feel fulfilled and successful. Take time this year to get to know yourself and find your passion! If you do so, by the end of the year, you will feel extra prepared to head back to school!
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