Must-haves for 2012: black dress, heels you can walk in, and a mission statement

I graduated university with what I thought was an unbeatable, winning combination that would set me up for success as soon as I peeled off my cap and gown: a bachelor’s degree, four co-op placements, extensive retail and volunteer experience and a passion for doing good.  But the contract I was on at my first full-time job could not be renewed, and I couldn’t seem to find something to replace it.  My boyfriend and I had also just broken up, and it was one of those splits that grabs your heart, grinds it into hamburger and hands it back to you, expecting you to just keep on going like nothing happened.  All my friends were already working, and I was feeling lonely and sorry for myself.  Before I knew it I was sitting at home on a weekday afternoon with a bachelor’s degree, four co-op placements, extensive retail and volunteer experience and a passion that was slowly dwindling by the minute.  Needless to say, this was NOT going well.  I had big dreams about "making it" after I graduated, and these road blocks were getting in the way of that.  It would have been easy to get discouraged, and I was for while.  That got boring pretty quick, though, so I gave my head a shake and I started telling myself every morning that I determine my futureI am made for something/somewhere/someone special, and I will do everything I can to get there.  I didn’t know it right then, but this was, in fact, my mission statement.  And it seemed that as soon as I put that kind of spirited energy out into the world, my train started to get moving again.  Of course, it hasn’t been without bumps and stalls and at times, two steps backward.  But it’s been in those moments that my mission statement proved even more valuable, and helped me realize that things often don’t happen to you, but rather for you (shout-out to the way inspirational Amber Rae, for her poignant Ambergrams and whose blog us YWiB-ers turn to when days get rough!). So in addition to stellar high heels, a power black dress and a pen in your purse at all times, add “personal mission statement” to your list of must-haves for 2012.  It will give definition to everything you do (and we know you’re all doing a lot!) and help you find meaning when you're sure it isn't there.  Writing a 3,000 word paper on the history of agriculture in southern California?  Wrestling with the photocopier at work to print double-sided?  Struggling through training sessions for the Sun Run?  It’s all part of the journey, friends.  Your personal mission statement is the destination.