Let’s be real. Being young in the government is not easy. Yes, it’s a privilege to serve your country. And yes, the opportunities in government are often endless.
But you’re also entry-level in a bureaucratic, top-heavy organization, where many of your colleagues are significantly older and more experienced than you. That being the case, it’s easy to feel as if you don’t have a support network that understands your abilities and professional needs.
Luckily, it’s not just government employees who struggle with being a young professional. Even in the youth-heavy music industry, it’s difficult to be a newcomer – a fact that many artists use to inspire their music.
Below are a few lyrics to offer some advice and get you amped up about being young in government.
“Be young. Be dope. Be proud.” – Lana del Rey, American
The message: Don’t let your age hold you back. Especially in the public sector, age can be seen as a detractor because it implies a lack of experience. Highlight the advantages of your youth, such as your tech savviness or connection to a large social network, when seeking new jobs or responsibilities.
“We flawless, ladies tell ’em. I woke up like this.” – Beyoncé, Flawless
The message: Be proud of your natural abilities. Queen Bey is talking about her appearance, but her message is one that you can use for your more professional traits. If you are especially good at math, own it. Become the go-to person for budgeting and finance issues. If you have an obsessive attention to detail, let people know you’re probably the best person to proof department work.
“You can hate it or love it. Hustle and the struggle is the only thing I’m trusting.” -Iggy Azalea, Work
The message: Your hard work will pay off. There are no shortcuts. Whether you want to be a diva like Ziggy Izz or a government rockstar, a strong worth ethic is the key to professional success.
“We only humans, girl. We make mistakes. To make it up, I’ll do whatever it takes.” – 50 Cent, 21 Questions
The message: Granted, Fiddy was talking about relationships, but he had a good point. Especially as a young employee, you’re going to make mistakes. That’s just part of learning a new job, a complex agency, and the rules of government. What’s important is that, when you do make a mistake, you take ownership and amend it. Then, move forward.
“It’s okay not to be okay. Sometimes it’s hard to follow your heart. But tears don’t mean you’re losing, everybody’s bruising.” – Jessie J, Who You Are
The message: It’s okay to admit that everything in your life isn’t going according to plan. Most of your peers are probably feeling the same way. But that doesn’t mean you’re failing. It just means you’re adapting.
“You know life is what we make it, and a chance is like a picture, it’d be nice if you just take it” – Alicia Keys, ft. Drake, Unthinkable
The message: Don’t be afraid to take risks. This is especially good advice when you’re young. Try to take some risks in your professional life. Take every opportunity to learn new skills, expand your responsibilities, and step out of your comfort zone.
“Sky is the limit and you know that you keep on. Just keep pressin’ on. Sky is the limit and you know that you can have what you want. Be what you want.” – Notorious BIG, Sky is the Limit
The message: Don’t limit yourself. If what you’re doing right now isn’t working for you, figure out something new to pursue. Like I said at the beginning of this post–government is full of opportunities. You just have to get out there and make the most of them.
Do you have any other lyrics that keep you inspired at work? Let us know in the comments below!
Photo Credit: Paul Hudson/Flickr