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Why I Rejected A Job Despite The Prestige & Privilege It Gave Me

Earlier this year, I made the hardest decision of my life to date. I was faced with two amazing job opportunities, and having only graduated one month prior, I felt extremely out of my depth. It was as if I was being asked to decide how the rest of my life would pan out there and then, and frankly, I was feeling the pressure.

I’ve always been someone that makes decisions easily. Judgments calls about my studies, friendship and relationships have always come very easily. I tend to think about any given topic for about five minutes before making a decision on it. However, faced with this career decision, for the first time I felt completely unsure of myself, or so I thought. Looking back on the situation, I knew exactly what I wanted to do. As always, I had made my actual decision very quickly – after five minutes in fact. The conflict I was facing was between society’s expectations of me and my own hopes and dreams.

Without revealing too much, here’s some context. Job number one was within a world famous institution. Something that anyone hearing it would be impressed by. An occupation that would give my parents endless bragging rights at weddings and other family occasions, but not one which I thought would particularly fulfil me. Another huge factor was also that job number one was UK based – a massive turn off for someone like me who basically vowed to leave and never return the minute Brexit happened. Although I too was slightly tempted by the allure of the incredibly impressive status of job number one, I knew in my heart of hearts that it wasn’t right for me. As someone who is just embarking on the start of their career, my priority is learning. Having recently settled on the industry I think I want to spend the majority of my working life in, I am now extremely motivated to spend the next few years perfecting my craft. Although job number one was a unique opportunity to gain insight into one of the world’s most secretive institutions, I knew that I wouldn’t truly be learning something – which job two offered in abundance.