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Everything in Moderation

Your Career Should Be Part of Your Life (Not the Other Way Around)

By Published on .

Alex Kniess Alex Kniess
One of the more valuable things I learned this summer had nothing to do with advertising: You have your whole life to work, so make sure you have fun while doing it.

Well, maybe I didn't learn it for the first time; maybe I just had the opportunity to relearn it. Over the last several years, I have lived and breathed advertising/marketing/consumer culture/creativity/buzz words. So much so, in fact, that it has been hard to live and breathe much of anything else.

Because the University of Oregon is on a quarter system, and because it is a state school, we don't start classes until Sept. 29. So although we end each year a little later than other schools, I managed to enter my internship at BBH this past summer only one week late. Yet when I finished and moved back to Oregon, I still had nearly two months until school started. This realization of two separate summers enabled me to finally live and breathe both advertising, and, well, everything else.

So I lived the typically obsessive advertising life and the slightly less-obsessive life of a normal college student. And let me tell you, both were very sweet. But each was made sweeter by the company of the other.

In our last years before graduation, especially, we tend to get caught up in career-centric activities and neglect the simple pleasures in life. It's easy to take on too much and end up starting to "work" before you've even graduated.

To remind me that "it's the journey, not the destination," my friend Brock Kirby, himself a copywriter at JWT, sent me this humorous take on the chase for the next big thing: www.neticons.net/music_life/.

I'm not the smartest kid, nor the most experienced, but I can shamelessly heed the advice of online flash movies without remorse. We should all do the same.