What Vocation Means to Me
Having the opportunity to be a part of the Wild Hope Seminar has been an incredible experience. Vocation is a term that I have learned, unlearned, and relearned this year. Coming into the seminar series, I thought I had an idea of what the term “vocation” meant… clearly meaning that your vocation is what you choose to do in life- your job/career/ every day until the end of your days. What I discovered during this seminar was so much more. Your vocation doesn’t necessarily need to be something that comes easily to you and as you shift within life, so does your vocation. There is no “finding” necessary- your vocation will find you! What truly matters is what you do with your vocation in the present moment. Something that I learned about myself is that my true vocation is helping people- this can come in many forms and is not tied down to one career path. Vocation can be embedded into your values or can sprout and take root because of your values. Asking the question, “What will I do with my one wild and precious life?” has now become a phrase in my everyday language with students and upon reflection in my own life. I have become a more intentional and meaningful colleague, mentor and supervisor because of the Wild Hope Seminar.
Vocation to me represents a deep sense of rootedness in who we are in the midst of a complex world. Our vocation honors our experiences, relationships and dispositions, while connecting with the world’s greatest concerns.
Aristotle said, “where the needs of the world and your talents cross, their lies your vocation.” I think the simplicity of that statement allows the breadth of what vocation encompasses to be truly understood. Vocation is complicated and multifaceted. A person can have more than one vocation at a time and change their vocation(s) over the course of their lifetime. Vocation evolves just like our lives evolve. I think it is freeing to understand that your vocation(s) will be fulfilling, but they may compete, they may be difficult and they may not be the life you expected or wanted. Ultimately vocation is something you are called to do, something that you can’t say no to, but need to be doing in order to truly see your talents and skills being utilized. I think college is the perfect time of your life to be spending time reflecting, thinking about your adult life, who you want to be when you grow up and how you can be positioning your path to truly realize your vocational calling. I want to continue asking myself the big enough questions and I hope that our students get that opportunity as well.