Like many thousands of you may be thinking of heading straight off to university, college, or off to do an apprenticeship once you have finished with school or college. Indeed, you may have had these plans set out in front of you for some time, almost like a natural progression from nursery school on. However, you might want to take a moment to pause and consider time out for a gap year. While they can cost money, they can be like buying once-in-a-lifetime memories – and offering yourself experiences that you may never get the chance to have again.
‘Buying memories’ may seem like a strange idea, but it is what you do whenever you go out to anything like a concert, to the cinema, or to a football match. Of course, there is entertainment in all of these, but it is not just the moment that you are paying for when you buy a ticket, but also the experience. Watching a cup final, or seeing your favourite band with your friends alongside you are great at the time they are happening, but they also give you memories to cherish.
Similarly, going on holiday is like buying memories as much as it is taking time to relax, while there are those who love to travel simply to see new places or experience new cultures. These people want to have new experiences, and so will use their holidays to head out on adventures around the world. In many ways, an organised gap year is similar to a holiday, but there are some very obvious and notable differences.
Most importantly perhaps is the length of time that you have with a gap year. There is a good chance that you will never have the same freedom to take months out of your life and head out on an adventure as you do now. Once your studies are finished and you are between either more study or the workplace, you have a moment to reach out and take the opportunity a gap year can offer.
A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that will change you and give you experiences, a gap year will not only offer your skills but also a whole new perspective. A lot of people return from gap years saying that it gave them a new insight into the world, and had actually changed them as people too.
Of course, there are those people who take ‘career breaks,’ and head out around the world, but this gets harder as you get older. As soon as you begin to factor in things like paying rent or having a mortgage, your work commitments, and (it may happen one day) having a family, and it is clear that getting away for a few months becomes increasingly tricky!
Instead, right now, you have the freedom to take that time out for a gap year. Recharge your batteries after your studies, and use the time to have new experiences too. Take a look at the gap year opportunities that are available right here on NotGoingToUni and see if any inspire you.
Could you find the time to do something that you have always wanted to do? A gap year may just offer the opportunity!