However, just like generations before you, your trajectories need not be – and should not be – defined by the crises thrust upon you. Rather, you have the power to define them by the actions you choose to take in the midst of these colliding episodes.
In the world of architecture and design – the world I live in – problem solving is what every practitioner in the field is challenged to do effectively and innovatively. Future female and gender diverse leaders have a leg-up in this area, having had to contend with multiple, conflicting, simultaneous, reinforcing and emotionally fraught problems for millennia – some of which are only now becoming known, and have a long way to go in achieving widespread social acceptance and legitimacy.
Take some time to reflect on your skills, your mental, physical, and emotional potential, and on all the knowledge you have gathered over time. Then take that reflection and match it with confidence. Defend your ideas, debate, and argue for what you believe in, and trust the fact that you can make a difference.
When I was your age, making a difference in the world was all I wanted to do. It sounds like a cliché, but it is the truth. And although I spent years drawing plans as part of my design career, I never had one for myself. The truth is, I never have. My non-plan has led me to opportunities I could not have dreamed up.
So, whether you have a plan or not, my advice is to always come back to yourself, your individuality, your creativity, your passion, and bring that to the table of any given opportunity that comes your way. Because crises will keep coming, but the shape of your future will be determined on how you show up to face them.
Best of luck,