A PeRson's destiny

      44 Comments on A PeRson's destiny

GumpFeather“I don’t know if we each have a destiny, or if we’re all just floating around accidental-like on a breeze,” said Forrest Gump in the film’s final moments.

I’m not going to write about this very tragic week.  Our thoughts are with Boston and Texas whose victims’ awful destiny was to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I’d like to write about more a life-affirming kind of destiny: the aspirations of my students.  Many are anxious about the next few weeks, because these are the weeks when college will end and they’ll try to find employment in their chosen field of public relations.  Some are already getting interviews and jobs; most are getting the process started.  As I speak with them, I find myself thinking about clichés and maxims we often hear.  A few I like are worth examining:

“Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.”  TRUE.  While PR often features long hours, frustrating clients and unfriendly reporters, you’ll rarely have a bad day when you like your job. I’ve loved almost every minute of my PR career.

“It’s not what you know, but who you know.” TRUE…and FALSE.  Although it really helps to have connections and to network like crazy, you’re not getting a PR job without knowing what you’re doing–and possessing a degree.

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” TRUE…and FALSE…and my favorite maxim.  John Lennon’s lyrics acknowledge that however much you plan, events take different, both positive and negative, turns.  But I believe you should always point yourself in a direction and stick to it as best you can.  Life and career are tough boats to steer.

Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote: “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” TRUE, again.

“I don’t know if we each have a destiny, or if we’re all just floating around accidental-like on a breeze,” said Forrest Gump, “but I think maybe it’s both. Maybe both is happening at the same time.”  Your thoughts?

44 thoughts on “A PeRson's destiny

  1. Erica Barnes

    I really enjoyed this post! I believe that everybody is destined for something, to a certain extent. Each of us has strengths and weaknesses, and when we figure out how to harness those talents, we find what we were meant to do.

  2. Alex Packer

    I sometimes find myself feeling like the worlds plaything. Trying desperately to pave a road towards reaching my goals just to be tossed around and knocked down like an injured mouse trapped in a cruel cat’s cage. But unforeseen circumstances are merely a part of life for every living thing.

    Just today I found myself identifying with a cliche, “you reap what you sow.” We are all responsible for our own lives, and while some seem to have it easier than others, being bitter about one’s lot in life is a downward spiral towards a crippling collapse. So, set a goal, put your head down, and keep those feet moving till you reach the end-zone. We must be resilient, and we MUST let our hearts lead us to places our minds may never let us go.

  3. Kristen Kelly

    This is one of my favorite posts! Although I’m not graduating this year, it really got me thinking about my future after college. Networking and making connections is my number one priority in the next year, as I have been doing that since freshman year. I agree that “It’s not what you know, but who you know” is true and false. That’s why networking is so important to start as soon as possible as you learn the material you need to succeed. You can’t just get a PR job by knowing someone without knowledge of what to do.

  4. caliannfornia

    I really liked this post. I agree with the connection comment. I think knowing people and putting yourself out there is great, but you have to make sure you equip yourself with as many skills and as much knowledge as possible. If you want to be somebody then go out there and make it happen. No one is stopping you. It’s a scary world and reality can be harsh but keeping positive and doing the best you can is better than not making any moves at all. Live a life with no regrets.

  5. Mara Ruocco

    This was all so encouraging and I loved all the quotes! I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason and I think that if you follow the right path it’ll lead you to where you need to be. We’re all learning and who knows where we’ll end up. My favorite quote you mentioned is “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans” and that’s because it is just so true. We’re all on a journey that pushes us and pulls us in so many directions and sometimes with such a force it takes us by surprise. As long as we follow what we believe and are willing to keep an open mind everything falls into place. We’re just at the beginning.

  6. sashmirpu

    I like your take on the quote “It’s not what you know, but who you know.” And, I agree that while it is very important to network and have connections, getting a job or an internship also depends on what you know how to do. I like to know that what I’m doing and learning in school will pay off in the future.

  7. Brittni Hicks

    First of all, I absolutely the quotes you have chosen. These are some of my favorites. Also, I am one of these seniors graduating and searching for employment. I don’t know if I believe in destiny so much, but I do believe some things are meant to happen to each of us. I think that is what Forrest Gump was saying and I do think I agree.

  8. Amanda Torres

    I LOVE THE QUOTES YOU CHOSE!! As for our future/destiny? That’s something that we’ll have to deal with in stride. The future is pretty scary, especially for students who are in school for 17 years of their life and then thrown into the “real world”. I think what’s best is to understand that we may have goals/plans, but they might not always work out and that’s what’s fun about being an adult! You can start something new! It’s not like choosing a major and getting “stuck” with it.

  9. aunaturalenyc

    I love these quotes! All of them have truth behind them and are great to think about. PR (along with a lot of other fields) thrive heavily on the quote “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” Networking has become one of the most influential tools someone can use to build their personal brand. As a college student, I saw the importance of networking when I went to my first PRSSA conference last year.

    Being able to meet many people who could potential be an employer, or even co-worker, in the future, will really help you build your personal brand. That’s why I think it is always super important to go to events like the PRSSA networking dinner and conference, so that you can being your networking circle early on.

  10. Amanda Daley

    I think as much as we like to believe that we can control our future, the truth is we really have know idea where we will end up. I love the quote from John Lennon that says “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” In life it is important to focus on the things you love to do because life is too short to be unhappy. As a student preparing to graduate and looking for jobs in the television industry, the possibilities are really endless for me and there are so many different avenues I can go down which I find exciting. This is why I also love the quote “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.”

  11. Mia D'Angelo

    I love quotes, I have them constantly on my twitter, instagram, Facebook, etc. One of my all-time favorites is “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” Although goals, plans and preparation are a necessary part of life, it is necessary sometimes to take a step back and experience ALL that is going on in your life outside of those plans. I also agree with the interpretation of “its not what you know, its who you know” Networking is huge and connections are so important especially in today’s world, but success goes far beyond a job title for me. Someone may get a foot in the door through connections, but maintaining it takes what you know, not who you know. This ties into the other quote “If you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life.” 100% true. If you love what you do, it won’t be work at all. Although these quotes may be cliches, there is a reason they are still said today!

  12. alexis gionesi

    I’m not too sure on destiny. Although I’d like to think that everything in life works the way it is supposed to, I feel it’s more the choices you make that get you there. It is easier to believe that there is a destiny, but I guess I’m not a believer.

  13. Kellianne

    Well… thankfully I am not graduating! I don’t need to worry about applying for jobs and such yet, but I still need to be hardworking in school and internships. Everything leading up to the time you graduate is what prepares you for your future. When people tell me that they hate the classes they take, I think they are crazy. If you already hate the classes you are taking still in college, do you really think you are going to like your job in the future? I definitely believe one of the best pieces of advice my dad told me was to do something you love. You shouldn’t hate every minute of your day whether it’s actually working or taking classes in college.

  14. rcardno91

    I love the quotes but the whole idea of destiny bothers me. Our actions have consequences and those consequences have consequences, nothing is predetermined. Of course things happen that we cannot explain but I do not attribute that to destiny. I believe in God and I believe that he cares about us feeble humans on Earth but I reject the idea that my entire life just follws along some master plan that I have no control over. I often say things like “I’m sure it will all work out.” But that speaks more to how lazy and hopeful I am. In the end, things work out or they don’t but I control my own life.

  15. kerrischreiber

    My favorite quote out of all of those was John Lennon’s, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making plans.” This is completely true and I agree with it 100%. When I find myself busy and immersed in everything going on around me, it seems as if everything starts to fall into place. It isn’t until I get too comfortable and focus narrowly on one thing that it feels like its all falling apart. There is no way to knowing where we will be in 5 years or even five days, it is uncontrollable. We just have to sit back and enjoy the ride.

  16. LucieSorel

    I completely agree with this post. Life is very unpredictable and that is what makes it exciting. Though I am not yet at the point of finding a job, I do know some things that I want in my future. I know that I will not be able to determine exactly where my life will go but some factors I do want to choose. Though there is no way of telling exactly what will happen, hard work and determination can always help one reach goals. This post was incredible inspirational and optimistic.

  17. Lola Odejobi

    I think my favorite quote is “do what you like and you will never work a day in your life.” I don’t think it’s fair to yourself to have a job or a career that you absolutely despise. It doesn’t matter how much money you’re making if you’re not enjoying your job. I am very excited to start a career in Journalism but I’m also nervous. I hope I enjoy it so it doesn’t become “only a job.”

  18. Hunter F. (@kristintellsall)

    Who knew, 4 years later and I’m sitting here typing a comment on this blog. So many things have happened between the start of my college career and the nearing end. I’m scared but at the same time so many accidents, events, and moments that have changed various courses of my life. I wouldn’t be half the person I am now if it weren’t for accidents. I can only imagine how many more crashes between planned and unplanned will happen but I know they’re coming steering me in some unknown direction that I will gladly (most likely unaware) embrace. I love this post because it’s true, so many things are said to us that we forget the real importance of them or just to even keep them stored for safe keeping when we do need advice.

  19. Carrie Walker

    I never thought I would actually say this but I agree with Forrest Gump. Our lives will always be filled with half of what we plan and what will actually take place. As a soon to be collge graduate I like to steer my life and future career plans in a certain direction. However, I have no idea what will come my way as I set on my career path. I personally will continue to try and plan and also adjust when more things come my way.

  20. ccorte6

    I love Forrest Gump and that quote definitely describes how I feel about life. Life is the most complicated thing in the world; we spend years in it and by the time we pass away may never know its true meaning. I definitely think that life guides us down certain paths, but we also have the choice to go down that road or not. Life guided me to transfer to Hofstra and become a PR major, and while I believe it happened for a reason, it was my choice to make and I’m glad that I did.

  21. Jeremy Beck

    I really like the quote “do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life”, I think that is the most important piece of advice for me to remember. I chose the public relations field because it interests me and it has a lot of different opportunities to find my niche, however I need to be reminded occasionally I chose it for the right reasons and hopefully the rest will take care of itself.

  22. EMC

    “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.” I struggle with this often. Those who get preoccupied with the future are often those with guilty hearts. The best solution is to trust yourself, your instincts, your direction, and let yourself enjoy the moment, because “living in the now” as they say, doesn’t have to be mutually exclusive with having your future on track. Being in the moment doesn’t mean you are casting aside responsibilities or plans for what is next.

  23. blarouche

    Even though I’m not graduating yet, this is still true to what runs through my head because I’m always thinking of my future. It’s hard to know that when we graduate there is no cushion left between us and the real world. I really liked your inclusion of the Ralph Waldo Emerson quote though because that is what has been taught to me by my parents. They always emphasize that my future is mine and only mine to control. I’m the only one who can say what I want to do with my life; you only get out of life what you put into it. Sure, looking towards life after college is scary because we don’t know how well we’ll succeed but we also won’t know how well we’re going to succeed until we go out there and give it our all.

  24. Shurida Lundi

    One of my favorite posts Professor Morosoff. As a junior, I get nervous because I haven’t had an internship yet but I am grateful for all the things I have been taught so far in my PR classes. I realize how much I do love the PR world and I’m always thinking of new ways to enhance what I learn in these classes. I do believe in the quote” Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life”. I never want to dread waking up and going to work in the morning and hopefully I won’t. With PR, you’re never bored and that’s what I love about the field so much. Even with the late nights of the countless projects, I am always happy with the outcome of the projects that I do. So my destiny is in my hands and I hope that I end up working in the PR world doing something I love.

  25. aalvey

    Gettin’ all teary-eyed over this one. I’m not graduating yet but I’m always thinking ahead so I’m already worrying about these kinds of things. I’ve known people who are so concerned with making the money and getting the best job that they lose sight of what’s important in life or why we’re here. I think tragedies like what happened in Boston remind us that life is short and if any of those people who lost their lives could come back it wouldn’t be to make more money or to spend another late night in the office. It would be to spend another day with their loved ones. Yes, money makes things easier and we’re all going to work really hard to get it, but if there’s anything I could say to my friends that are graduating it’s this: Relax. Everything will work out, and if you break your back trying to find a job right out of college then you’re going to wear yourself out for the rest of your working life which is going to be a VERY VERY long time.

  26. gionnacerniglia

    I still have another year to find a job after I graduate and I am just as anxious as any senior on the hunt for a job. I have heard from many people PR is a tough profession to get into, and you have to constantly work your way up the ladder. I have heard a majority of these quotes and I find them really inspiring. Emerson’s quote has always been one of my favorites because I believe that the person you decide to be is the person you will become, hopefully I am as successful and hardworking as I plan to be in the near future.

  27. Helen Masha

    I really enjoyed this post and I find myself often times wondering about destiny and what the future will bring. I really agree with Ralph Waldo Emerson and that is because of my father. My father grew up with nothing living in Detroit and always wanted more. He worked harder than I can imagine to make everything he has today and he truly did make his own destiny which is remarkable. I also agree with the fact that it is what and who you know that will help you to succeed. This all being said I think that is what is so scary to me at times. The fact that my destiny is my doing definitely puts the pressure on to make sure I make the right choices that will allow me to have the future I want. It would be nice to maybe sneak behind the curtain and see what is coming next for me but I suppose that would be taking the fun out of figuring it out one day at a time!

  28. Jenny Rowe

    I’m not sure if I agree with Ralph Waldo Emerson’s quote, “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” You could make a decision about what you want to do with your life and then realize what a mistake it is later on. I believe that everyone has a destiny, but many factors go into it along with the decisions you make.

  29. gmcillo

    As everyone else has stated this post could not have been at a better time. As the end of the semester approaches, this is the time that everyone starts to freak about graduation, jobs, and how they will spend their rest of their life. I truly believe in Emerson’s quote about density and also believe that things happen for a reason. Everyone has a path in life and now that graduation is among us it is our time to figure out how to follow it.

  30. Marissa Dombkowski

    I agree that we all have some sort of destiny but that we are also floating around. Seeing that I graduate in a few weeks and have to leave everything that I’ve just become comfortable behind, I’ve been looking for words of wisdom to get me through these emotional times. Though I don’t have a job just yet, I’m not going to panic because I do believe that along the way something good will come about. But I do have to try and put myself out there first for something to happen. I loved reading this post. It really came at a time when I needed to read some inspiring words about taking the next step in life.

  31. stevenpmorin

    I’m about to graduate in a few weeks, and while job searching has got me anxious, I wouldn’t say I’m terribly scared. I suppose it’s because I know that my destiny is, like everyone else at Hofstra, to get a job. I know it is going to happen, and thus, there isn’t much to worry about. I understand that *where* a person is hired is very important, too, and that’s why this time in my life isn’t entirely carefree.

    On an unrelated note, I *hate* the quote “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” If that’s true, why the hell am I paying $50k/year for a worthless education!?

  32. aciardullo

    Ironically enough, I was sitting at my kitchen table last night freaking out because I just realized we have less than three weeks left of classes; so you couldn’t have posted this at a better time. I completely agree with your comments on those quotes, and think they are all great ones. Graduating college is both a very exciting experience along with an extremely scary one whether you know what you are doing after graduation or don’t have the slightest idea. I also think a common misconception with college graduates is that they think whatever job you choose or get after you graduate is the one you have to stick with which is untrue. You have to start somewhere and try different things to help figure out what you love and what you hate (which is also why internships are so great.) If you don’t love what you are doing, you can and should make a change. You should never feel stuck, you have full control over what you do.

  33. Andrea Rebello

    With all of the tragic events that happened this past week, I question the meaning of “destiny.” I agree with Emerson’s quote and strongly believe that we have a large influence on our own destiny. Hard work pays off.

  34. nikkigyftopoulos

    This post really struck me and got me thinking about my future life and all it has in store for me. Although I am not graduating this year, I am constantly thinking and worrying about my future and my career after graduation. It is a scary thought to have to pin point what you want in life and strive to achieve that goal. All of these sayings really do explain life and destiny in their own way and all of them hold some truth. Emerson’s quote struck me the most though because I truly believe in this maxim. You cannot just let fate take the wheel in life and hope that everything will turn out the way you want it. The only person who can create greatness in your life is yourself. The more risks you take and the more mistakes you make will make you learn and help you achieve success and happiness. As I travel through my life and quickly reach the end of my college career, I am trying to experience everything, in order to learn and grow as much as possible. I know that, in the end, it is my actions that determine my destiny, and my future lies in no ones hands but my own.

  35. Lauren Ciuzio

    All of these quotes are great, but i’m particularly fond of the Emerson quote. Now that i’m graduating in a month, I have been so nervous and on edge lately. Nervous about finding a job, and liking the one that I land. In the beginning of the year, I was having a hard time accepting the fact that I will no longer have a care free lifestyle, but now I am so excited to get a job, and to make a life for myself. Just like Emerson said, you decide the person who you are going to be come. It doesn’t just happen automatically. I believe you receive what you put in. If you work hard at something and are dedicated to it, odds should work in your favor.

  36. Claire T.

    I love Forrest Gump, and I love that you included his quote in this piece. It really makes your point that sometimes it’s both the plan and the timing that land you where you’re “destined” to be. I’m currently in the process of trying to get a position with the internship that I’ve had for 7 and a half months and it’s been such a ride. This past week I faced probably the biggest test so far in my chosen career path. I was asked to gather material to send to an executive in which he would judge whether or not I am right for the position. I still don’t know the outcome yet, but I know that I’m confident in the ideas that I sent him and that I put my best stuff out there regardless of whether or not he likes it. I think we have to plan a certain amount of our lives in order to be in the right place at the right time to land that job we’ve been working for our whole life.

  37. Christina Deecken

    I especially liked your inclusion of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s quote. I definitely think that the person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be. If you want to see changes or progress in your life, the only way to do that is to be proactive. Essentially, I believe that in order to become the person you want to be, you have to make important decisions as well as put in a huge amount of effort to make that happen. You can’t just rely on destiny. You make your own destiny.

  38. Ian Poulos

    The future is determined through a combination of two things: controlled and uncontrolled events. Both destiny and accidental happenings are something that cannot be controlled, and for this reason, they are essentially equivalent in terms of how they affect real life. On the other hand, controlled events are defined by one’s performance and preparedness, so education, self-training, and, perhaps, job experience can fall under this category. The outcome of an unexpected event hinges on a person’s ability to apply aggregated skills and expertise – that is, the control aspect – to the unique situation. In other words, always be ready for what you would least expect.

    In terms of job opportunities, someone once told me to “live everyday as if someone is watching because you may encounter a future employer in the most unlikely places.”

  39. janabanana12

    Forrest Gump’s words have been my thoughts for years. I always wonder: do we control our fate or is everything meant to be? We’d like to say some things, like randomly running into an ex, are meant to be and others, like The Boston Bombing are random, but really: how do we know? I feel like my entire life is a clique, because I believe all of the above statements. Even though there are horrible things that happen in life, I will say that everything happens for a reason, and if we love what we do, we’ll never have to work again.

  40. aspenc6

    This was an inspiring post, especially after last week’s tragic events. I agree with everything you mentioned. The saying I agree with the most is “It’s not what you know, but who you know.” When I started looking for summer internships this past January, I reached out to pretty much everyone I had ever met in the PR field. Two of these contacts landed me interviews at agencies that had told me that they had already found their summer interns. After receiving emails that said they were all set for the summer, I was sent an additional email a few days later that said they had talked to “so and so” and would I like to come in for an interview for a summer internship position? Obviously once I was there, I had to prove myself so it is definitely a combination of who you know and what you know. But having connections is definitely important!

    Oh and by the way, I ended up getting an internship at one of the agencies I mentioned. My contact that gave me the “in” was a Hofstra alum that I had met at a few School of Comm networking events!

    1. jmorosoff Post author

      Congratulations, Annik! Let me know if you need a faculty supervisor. I’d be happy to do it if you don’t have someone in place already.

      1. aspenc6

        Thanks Professor! I appreciate the support. Professor Semple has agreed to be my supervisor, but I’ll let you know if I have any questions or problems!

  41. jmorosoff Post author

    I love your response, Brenna. The only real way to learn about yourself is to take chances and make decisions that are hard to make. And sharing the resulting experiences also helps you to form who you are and the paths you’ll take.

  42. Brenna Harran

    Great post and very true. It is nerve racking thinking about the future, your career, and life in general but if you keep an open mind and believe in yourself and what you love doing then you will be okay. “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life” I have heard so many times, most memorably from my parents. My Dad always would say that to me when I was younger and thinking about my future. Even if you don’t make all the money in the world, as long as you like the field you are working in then that is all that matters. You could be making millions of dollars and hating your job, which will make you an unhappy person. Also, I love Ralph Waldo Emerson’s quote “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” In the past year alone, I have discovered a lot about myself and where I want to be as a person in future. I have taken many risks and tried a number of new things and I think if you work hard, want to be successful and a good person you will be that. The future is in your hands…


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