Be open to new opportunities
I was thinking about the last few years, and I realized that my life is full of coincidences that have changed my life for the better. All situations that occur in our lives are divided into two categories: the ones we have control over, and the ones we don’t.
Sometimes, your plans do not turn out as well as things that happen randomly. This made me think of the saying, “The first time is an accident, the second time it is a coincidence and the third time it is regularity.”
I was in my last year of college in Ukraine, and there was this beautiful new, luxury, five-star hotel for the EURO 2015 on the square, just across the road from my university. Every day I would pass it and think about how great it would be to work there.
One day, my friend and I planned to meet in front of that building before hanging out. She was, as always, a good 30 minutes late. While I waited, I spontaneously decided to go in and fill out an application, just to kill time. There was position open as the assistant of an administrator in one of their restaurants. I thought there was no way they would hire somebody my age for the position, but I applied anyway. Three hours later, I get a call from the hotel asking for an interview later that day. I was hired for the job. That day I wasn’t even mad at my friend for being late; I even took her out to lunch to celebrate.
The interesting thing about life is that you never know where a situation might lead. For example, the owner of the hotel was also the president of our soccer stadium. After working in the hotel for a year, I was offered a job as a project manager in the soccer stadium. It was an amazing experience for me, especially being that soccer is my number one sport – a good indication of the fact that I am from Europe.
Before coming to the U.S., almost three years ago, I was debating whether I should come or pursue my master’s degree. I was taking a subway and there was this nice, old man who started talking to me. All of the sudden, he gives me a piece of advice that blew my mind since we had not been talking about the subject at all. He said, “If you are thinking about something, but at the same time you are not sure about it, just do it. Everything will turn out great and even better.” I had to take a moment and process this, but he seemed to know exactly what I needed to hear.
Sometimes, it is all about being in the right place at the right time and having a little bit of luck. My advice is to be open for opportunities and work on your network; you never know who you might run into or what life might have prepared for you.