It’s not easy.

Honestly, being young and wanting to already achieve our dreams – especially at a young age of 23 – isn’t as easy as we think. We often daydream about finally being successful, doing the things we love, or making our passion our profession, until reality hits us hard like a rock and figure we aren’t even halfway there yet.

It’s satisfying to think about that day when we finally make it. It’s wonderful to imagine ourselves finally being financially free, having a good career – a happy family on the line too, maybe – until we realize things right now aren’t still making sense. And you— you wonder how and why things aren’t working out in the real world. You wonder how and why when all you ever were in college was that best kid everybody knew for having a dean’s list GWA.

You think about the pressure around you – bills, parent’s expectations, the people-who-believe-in-you-‘s expectations, and so forth. You contemplate about most things and thought, “maybe all you ever had before was luck and reference materials.” That you, yourself, weren’t prepared for what’s exactly out there in the corporate jungle.

You ask yourself, “Why?” “How come?” “Why am I only like this?” and you feel depressed.

And then there’s the average girl who’s underemployed, working at a pharmacy when she graduated a Architecture in college, and this girl who graduated “with honors,” settling for a call-center job because they hire on-the-spot and the salary was high.

They feel like the four-year course their parents spent on them were all put to waste because they couldn’t even practice the course they graduated from. They think they’re less of a “person” and “useless” because they’re not even “good enough” to land a profession under their bachelor’s degree. And right now, they both feel hopeless.

And then, there’s “she.” The girl who landed a great job at a big company but often fails her quality scores and product knowledge tests. Everyone thinks so highly of her for landing a great job at the most top-paying company, not knowing she still keeps on failing behind doors. She never tells people what’s going on because not only will it hurt her ego, but will also affect the number of people who are ‘inspired’ of her.

She takes this “inspiration” as a form of “pressure” because for her and what’s going on with her now, she thinks she’s undeserving and not good enough.

Truthfully, life won’t throw us lemons if we don’t know how to make a lemonade out of them. We are where we are right now because that is exactly where we’re meant to be for now. We have to undergo the hard paths as preparation, and most of the time, these hardships are required for our elevation. Because in the event we hit rock-bottom, we know the only way to go is to go up.

We have to grow from the lessons, embrace the hardships and failures, and outgrow old habits that will never contribute to our growth. Remember, the Roman coliseum wasn’t built in a day as the masters were never beginners. The coliseum had to break down a few times or miss a building block before it got built. Masters in their field had to fail numerous times before they got to where they are right now.

Life is a work in progress, and in order to hone our skills both soft and hard, we have to experience torment to make room for gratitude.

And just because we aren’t there where we want to be yet, doesn’t mean we’ll never make it. Because if you had and never experienced these feelings of frustration and sadness, you will never appreciate your journey, and the gold pot at the end of the rainbow. Imagine, if things went your way mistake-free, what would life be? Do you think adulthood is bearable and easy? Doubtful.

What I’m saying is, it’s okay if you settle first for a job you don’t love before your dream job. It’s okay to settle for a rank and file position so you can experience everything underneathe before you go up. And it’s okay to settle for a different industry for a while. Because who knows? Maybe you’re meant to be something greater—Perhaps, a businesswoman or an achiever in this industry, per se—and this job, right now, now is just your stepping stone. Who knows THIS is where your calling starts? We’ll never know. We just have to trust the process.

Remember: some people get fired constantly before they found their true passion. Some had to fail multiple times, and some had to sacrifice a lot just to heed to their calling. The only difference is they never gave up, and so should we.

If you’re currently working underemployed, suffering the stigma of ‘not being good enough’ because you are in a different industry or failing your quality scores, don’t worry. Because as the Emperor of China says in Mulan (1998) “the flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all. “

Stay resilient. Stay strong. No matter where you currently are in life.

It gets better.