Pen v. Pencil–The Great Debate

It is a GREAT feeling when we have it all together! We know exactly what we want to be when we grow up, who our best friends are and the exact time we have to get up in the morning in order to be ready on time. We create plans for ourselves and our futures and these plans become so concrete, we dismiss any thought about altering our plans; we will not change. We write our plans in pen because we have no intention of ever erasing them to write new ones.

Until recently, my goals and the process I was going to use to achieve them had been written in pen. I knew since I was a freshman in high school that I wanted to go to Kansas State University, Major in Agribusiness and eventually work as a loan officer with Farm Credit. That was that. Less than a month ago, as I sat down to figure out the classes I wanted to enroll in for the next semester, I threw away the plans I had written in pen and traded them for a new blueprint–making sure to use pencil. Realizing that maybe I was not quite sure of what I wanted to do, I struggled to get rid of the plan I had written in pen.  It was easy to be satisfied with my path because it was familiar. With the help of some friends and a mentor or two, I rewrote my plan by changing my major and accepting the fact that things change and my new plan may also need a few revisions in the future.

The pencil is better than the pen. This isn’t because the pencil allows you to make mistakes, but because the pencil allows you to make necessary changes–the pencil is flexible; the pen is rigid.

As young adults, we make decisions everyday that affect our future. We are deciding where we want to go to college, who we want to spend our time with and (the most horrifying) what we want to do in our careers. It is important to remember that no matter how solid of a plan we have, we need to be open to change. Things happen and our plans WILL change! That does not mean that our plans were not good, it just means that they are no longer right for us. So, plan your future and dream big, but write in pencil.

Jon Bon Jovi says it this way:

“Map out your future, but do it in pencil. The road ahead is as long as you make it. Make it worth the trip.

Change is scary, but change is good!  Be open and be accepting.

Living To Serve,

Trenton Smedley