How To Create Career Happiness FAQ

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"The work you do while you procrastinate is probably the work you should be doing for the rest of your life." -Jessica Hische

Aside from delicious vegan food, there isn’t a topic I enjoy discussing more than career happiness. It’s something I’m deeply passionate about and thrilled when I can throw ideas around with other people.

I could talk about it until I’m blue in the face. But, I guess that is pretty evident below.

Keep in mind, I really have no idea what I’m doing most days and I’m not here to give you advice on your unique academic or career situation. I can offer insight from my own experiences and lessons learned along the way. My goal for this post is to create a place for discussion so everyone can join in and offer their input, stories, and insight. That’s when the magic happens!

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My story in short:

I graduated in October 2006 with a BAH degree in Psychology and minor in Family and Child Studies. In October 2008, I graduated with a Master’s Degree w/ Honours in Social Psychology. Prior to graduating, I interviewed for a full-time research position during Spring 2008. It was offered to me and I took it even though my gut told me that the timing wasn’t right. I was already a full-time grad student and part-time teaching assistant which kept me very busy.

But I took the job anyways even though every instinct I had was saying DON’T DO IT.

Lesson #1: Listen to your gut.

Eric and I were also planning our wedding to be held on Aug. 31, 2008. Stress was at an all-time high as I juggled courses, my thesis, a new demanding job, and wedding planning. My eating disorder got bad during this time and I often starved myself or over-exercised to deal with my emotions.

In October 2008, I was happy to be graduating, but I still wasn’t enjoying my career as a researcher like I thought I should be. While the money flowed, it didn’t matter.

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On October 31, 2008 I started Oh She Glows as a hobby in an effort to add some joy back into my life.

Oh, and joy it brought!

This blog was in essence, ‘the work I did while I procrastinated’, as the opening quote mentions above. I blogged at breakfast, during my lunch break, and after dinner, for months. It was a lot of work, but looking back, it was the best positive escape I could’ve had to get me through that time.

This blog gave me the courage to pursue my passions full-time so I planned my actual escape and in early 2009, I quit.

It was the scariest, yet best thing I could have done.

Below are some of your career change questions that you posed on facebook last week.

How did you find your passion?

1. Get rid of life toxins

Until I was about 24-25 years old, my hobbies were calorie counting, the scale, and exercising. I didn’t have any real hobbies aside from playing sports throughout school and if you asked me what my passions were I would have stared at you blankly. To find my passions, I had to get rid of life toxins that weighed me down. Once I entered recovery for my eating disorder, I was able to add positivity back into my life such as finding new hobbies and activities. We need to get rid of things weighing us down to make room for inspiration, creativity, and authenticity.

2. Give yourself Me Time

It’s easy to say ‘I don’t have time right now’, but this is when it’s especially important to take time out for yourself. I gave myself permission to do things I enjoyed whether it be hanging out with friends, baking, reading, or spending time with Eric. Even if it was only 30 minutes a day, it was my time to do what I wanted and slowly discover activities that I enjoyed. ‘Me time’ allows us to figure out what it is that makes us happy.

3. Allow creativity to flow

Shortly after graduating, I started my blog which turned out to be the real gateway to discovering my passions. What better creative outlet than having a blank slate each day to write whatever inspires me? As a creative person, I consider my blog a virtual vision board.  I can write about whatever I want which was a stark contrast to my role as a researcher. Overtime, I discovered that I had tapped into a huge passion in my life. (Another creative outlet I love is Pinterest). If there’s a voice inside you that suggests you try something out, give it a shot because it could be your hidden passion!

4. Look to your childhood

Look back to your childhood and ask yourself what activities you enjoyed. The passions we have as children are clues to what we might enjoy as adults.

As a child I loved:

  • Playing house and school with all kinds of characters, names, and story-telling
  • Playing with Barbie’s & Lego and creating stories about the ‘people’
  • Polaroid, disposable, and film cameras !!!
  • Writing Fiction stories
  • Drawing, painting, crafting
  • Baking & easy-bake ovens
  • Playing with friends and animals
  • The outdoors, playing outside for hours, skipping, building snow forts
  • Track & Field, softball

 

My passions today seem to have the same underlying characteristics, albeit through different forms and expressions!

How did you know that your career was the right choice long-term?

Nothing in life is a sure bet, but my instincts told me I was on the right path. Sometimes hope, a good feeling, and a positive outlook are the only things we have. If I told myself I couldn’t do it, I would probably still be at my old job. Oh She Glows started out as a hobby while I did my ‘real work’. It turned out that I not only enjoyed blogging, but I fell in love with it. The blog and bakery brought together my passions like inspirational writing, healthy food, cooking/baking, fitness, and helping others.

When I couldn’t imagine myself not doing it, I knew I had found something special. It’s sort of like knowing you’ve met the person you want to spend your life with. I knew Eric was the one for me because I couldn’t imagine us apart. I felt the same way with my new career.

How did you deal with a severe pay cut?

Not getting a regular pay check in the bank every two weeks was difficult to deal with. I struggled with an identity-crisis (who was I now that I didn’t have a full-time job and steady income?) and insecurity (what would others think of me?). I had to make financial cutbacks in every aspect of my life. I only spent money on essentials like food and bills. I didn’t spend money on entertainment, eating out, clothing, or anything that I didn’t think was a necessity at the time. I got used to the cutbacks after a couple months and many of my money-saving habits stuck with me.

Do you think you would have taken that leap if it was just you taking care of you? I admire what you do and would give a kidney to be in your shoes, but just don’t feel that it’s possible for me. I’m not pessimistic–I am proud and satisfied with what I’ve done–but I’m realistic.

I would’ve left my research position eventually, but probably not as quickly had I been single. I saved consistently for almost a year before I left my research position so I could cover my share of the bills for the first while, but if I was single I probably would’ve stayed in the field for another 2-3 years so I could save up enough to feel stable financially. I knew in my heart that I wasn’t meant to be a researcher so I would’ve done what was necessary to change my career path even if it wasn’t as soon as I wanted. I’m a firm believer that planning and preparation is crucial if you are serious about making a career change. If you think it will never happen, you are probably right.

How did you take the leap with a career change?

Quitting my job was not an impulsive decision even though it may seem that way. It was a calculated decision that I planned for months before actually quitting. I flip flopped back and forth all the time, but ultimately, I knew in my heart that I had to go through with it. The day that I quit was not planned though. It just happened to be a really bad day that fueled my fire. :)

How do I know what my strengths are?

Growing up, I never really considered myself good at much. In my late teens, when I was trying to figure out what career I would enjoy, I asked Eric what I was good at because I had no clue. If you are lost about your own strengths, ask your family members or your partner. Most people can identify strengths in other people much easier than they can in themselves. Also, think about things that you do well. Are you an expert Sudoku player? Maybe you have a strength in problem solving. Are you great at knitting? Maybe you have a strong attention to detail and lots of patience. Do you love making lists and hosting parties? Maybe you have strengths in event planning. Do you love to bake? Maybe you have a sweet tooth like me. heheh…

Oddly enough, I went to see a Career Counselor during my first year of university because I was having doubts about my career path. After answering a battery of tests, I was told that I was suited for a creative field, such as teaching, writing, culinary arts, fashion design, or photography. A test could detect my strengths when I couldn’t detect them in myself. I highly recommend seeing a Career Counselor if you can.

I want to change careers, but my fear of other family members judging me is paralyzing. How did you get over worrying about what others thought?

This was my biggest hurdle of all. I think most of us care deeply about what our loved ones think, whether we like to admit it or not. I had so much anxiety to tell my friends and family that I quit. It almost kept me from quitting at all.

Ultimately, I realized that I couldn’t live my life for other people. We lost a friend suddenly to cancer in 2008 and it really made me change the way I live my life. I stopped beating myself up and worrying about what others thought. I don’t know how long my life will be, but I do know that I’m now living it authentically rather than putting off happiness for another day.

I would love to hear how it felt to walk away from a career you had invested so much time and money in!

The day I quit was a mix of negative and positive emotions. I felt shame, guilt, relief, anxiety, happiness, worry…you name it (see my I Quit post).

Do I regret the 7 years I spent in university? Not a chance. I now know what will make me happy in a career and what won’t. I may have figured it out the hard way, but I’m happy I did at all. An education is invaluable, even if not used in the traditional way that its intended (is it ever these days?). I still feel like I’m fulfilling my goal of helping other people (which is what drew me to psychology), but perhaps not in the way I initially imagined. The twists and turns of life are often the greatest.

How do you deal with isolation when making the change even though you know it’s an unhealthy career for you?

Losing contact with my coworkers was very isolating, especially during the first few months when I was feeling a gamut of negative emotions and questioning my path in life. In the workplace, coworkers are great for venting about problems, forming friendships, and leaning on when you need some support or advice. When I quit my job, I was on my own during workday hours. No one could figure it out but me and that was really scary.

Whether you are having a baby, moving, or taking on another big adjustment, surrounding yourself with supportive people helps so much. I talked to Eric, close family, friends, and on the blog. My mom always tells me that there is no greater joy than knowing your child is happy. If you can wake up each day and feel happy about where you’re going, you’re already a success.

“It isn’t necessary to know exactly how your ideal life will look; you only have to know what feels better and what feels worse…Begin making choices based on what makes you feel freer and happier, rather than on how you think an ideal life should look. It’s the process of feeling our way toward happiness, not the realization of the Platonic ideal, that creates our best lives.” ~Martha Beck

What she said. :)

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For a recap of how I changed careers and my full story, check out my ‘A Year Can Change A Lot’ Series:

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, and Part 10 (1 year later)

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{ 192 comments… read them below or add one }

Jen @ keepitsimplefoods.com August 25, 2011

Great post! I can relate to this a lot. Thanks for the inspiration!

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Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table August 25, 2011

I love this post. It motivates me to remain open and keep telling people about my passions. One day the perfect opportunity will present itself and I hope to have the guts that you do to make a move and take advantage of open windows.

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Heather @ Get Haalthy with Heather August 25, 2011

Taking that leap of faith is so scary… I hope to take it someday with the *right* planning in. Your story was great to read!

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The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh August 25, 2011

I am so glad I’m not alone in feeling the ways you felt when you left. Particularly “who are you” if you don’t have a “real” job in other people’s eyes. It’s scary to leave your job, I left mine of 12 years but in addition to the immense stress and hostile work environment it had become, I saw the writing on the wall. I knew the same time next year our branch wouldn’t exist. Some people followed me out and other waited for 6 months…when they fired them all.

Good for you for following your heart!

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Maria August 25, 2011

Thank you so much, Angela, for taking the time to answer these questions. I am at a turning point right now in my career and while I haven’t planned well enough yet to quit, I know it might be in the horizon for me. When I was struggling, I spent an entire evening reading your career change posts and they inspired and uplifted me. Just when I thought that I had no one to relate to, there your posts were…words that felt like they could have come from me as well. I didn’t quit my job after reading them, but I did make a plan. I made a plan to save money, to find happiness in the little things each day instead of saying “Oh, I’ll be happy when I finally can quit”…and so far its working. I work my 8+ hour a day and then I put them behind me, finding other things that make me happy. I try to separate work and personal life and know that my job doesn’t define me, it’s those things I do after work and on the weekends that are truly me, so I’ve embraced those.

Again, thank you for your openness. It has helped me tremendously.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) August 25, 2011

I’m so happy to hear that Maria :)

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Ellie@fitforthesoul August 25, 2011

Yeahh it’s interesting to see how so so many people don’t realize that they have made their identity WHAT they do and what kind of career they have, etc. It’s so cool that money-saving bits have stuck with you! I need to learn more of that I think haha.

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Ashley@MyFoodNFitnessDiaries August 25, 2011

What an encouraging post! I love your story, it’s so inspiring. I feel like it’s SO important to enjoy what you do over anything else. So many people stick with a job they don’t like because it’s making them good money or they think they’re just not “supposed” to enjoy their job. SO not true, and I’m so glad you confronted this. :)

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Shelley @ MileHighHealthy August 25, 2011

You are very brave and inspiring! Not many people will really take the chance to do what they love, especially in these tough times. I admire your decision, I know it couldn’t have been easy, and I am grateful that you are here at Oh She Glows now!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) August 25, 2011

I’m grateful for you Shelley :)

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Sara (The Veggie Eco-Life) August 25, 2011

This is such an inspirational post! I think it’s very sweet and brave at the same time that you post about this. I love that you did what felt best, even though it meant cutting back on things like clothes etc. It is nice and comforting to know that there ARE people who are doing what they want to do, and aren’t becoming poor of it ;)

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Bethany M. August 25, 2011

Hey Ang! Thank you for this post!

I especially love this portion of Martha Beck’s quote: “It isn’t necessary to know exactly how your ideal life will look; you only have to know what feels better and what feels worse.”

I can’t even begin to count how many times I’ve told myself that I don’t know where to start, or what the right path is for my life. But being able to say what feels better and what feels worse?- totally! Now that sounds like a starting place! I knew in my heart that my last job was sucking the life out of me, and even though I finally got out, it was hard to make that leap. Why don’t we trust our instincts more?! I had mornings when I’d wake up with finger nail dents on my palms (from clenching my fists in my sleep.) That’s not healthy. I was such an anxious ball of stress, and everyone that loved me knew I wasn’t happy. I think for a long time, I didn’t quit, because I didn’t know where to go. I interviewed for a few jobs, and they just felt wrong. I do think it is so important to pay attention to how we feel walking away from an interview. Did I like the people? Did I feel like there was positive energy in the air? Did I feel like people responded to me well, and would treat me with respect? If the answer is no, or if you have any nagging doubts, it’s probably not the right fit.

As we go through our career-finding journeys, I think it’s important to know that sometimes it doesn’t happen all at once. Sometimes you have to jump from cobblestone to cobblestone, each time taking a leap of faith, believing that it is going to get better. Maybe I don’t love my current cobblestone, but it sure as hell is a million times better than the one I just jumped off of! Finding the right job, the right fit, takes effort and time. I wish it would just take one big jump, but it takes a series of jumps. I hope that as long as I keep my happiness in sight, I’ll keep having the courage to leap. :)

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Angela (Oh She Glows) August 25, 2011

That is such a great analogy Bethany! I love the idea of stepping stones. :) And also, not to see failures but ask ‘what’s next’ instead as a reader earlier mentioned.

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Lauren August 25, 2011

This post is great! I really needed to read something like this before heading back to university this fall :) thanks, and I am glad you found your passion! It shows with ever post!

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Ashley August 25, 2011

I love this post– and back in August of last year, I made a similar decision. I had just graduated from college and since I was a student employee, I lost my job since I wasn’t a student anymore, and hadn’t gotten into graduate school. So I took a job in one of the coffee shops on campus. During the training for that job, I began to feel my anxiety coming back full-force. I eventually called my dad one Sunday morning and he told me that I probably wasn’t on the right path for me, and that I should quit. I quit that day, and never looked back. A month later, I took a job at Walmart, and while working there, the job I have now I interviewed for and received. In November, I felt that I could make ends meet with just one job instead of two, and went forward with the job I have now, which has me working at home. It’s led to me discovering a passion for baking/blogging and writing, as well. I finally feel like I’m heading somewhere I need to be– that I finally found happiness with what I want to do. It was scarier than hell, but I did it– and I’ve never regretted it:)

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Steph & lunges and lunch August 25, 2011

Yes, yes, yes on all accounts! :)
I know for sure that I’m in the career I want to be in, but I’ve definitely taken an unconventional route. I had a full-time job with benefits and it was in the right career….but the wrong agency. I was miserable, wishing every morning that I could call in sick. I left security and went to Kenya for several months where I volunteered at an orphanage, climbed Mt. Kenya, blew all my money and found my spirit again. I’m headed back to school this fall for my Masters in Social Work and I’m excited to see how I can marry my love of Africa, nutrition (did nutrition school this year too lol) and social work.

Thanks, Ang, for being honest not only about the joys of following your heart but also the struggles.

xo

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Kensy Balch August 25, 2011

Angela,
I don’t usually comment but I just wanted to thank you for your inspirational and contemplative posts. You have really influenced and shifted the way I see the world in following your blog the past three years. You are a wonderful, strong woman. I’m so happy you have found your passions and what you love.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) August 25, 2011

Thank you so much Kensy, that means so much to me. =) All the best!

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Stephanie August 25, 2011

This post is so inspirational. I feel as though I am at a turning point in my career, and this was just what I needed to read. Thank you!

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Jennifer August 25, 2011

Great post. You have seem really lovely thoughts on life. Thanks for sharing them.

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veganlisa August 25, 2011

Following your journey has given me the encouragement I needed to reexamine my path. I requested a six month leave of absence and have a big adventure planned. I don’t know what will happen when the six months are up but I now feel like I have permission to dream big.

xo

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Heather August 25, 2011

Amazing post!

I have just quit my job of three years to pursue a Master’s in Counselling Psychology. A very big change!

Like you my decision seemed spontaneous to outsiders but has been very well calculated.

Thanks for the inspiration!

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girl in the pink August 25, 2011

This post was so inspirational for me!

Last year my husband and I quit our full time jobs, moved to another state and started new careers! Financially, it was a scary move – we were really broke for awhile and still kind of are! BUT, you are so right – you get used to the cutbacks and I actually think I have learned a lot of about what I really do need and what I don’t.

It took me awhile to get in the swing of things, but everything is starting to fall into place and I am so glad we made the move! It’s so important to follow your passion!

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AGS August 25, 2011

Angela — thank you for continuing to write about this topic of finding your passion. . . following your dream. . . dealing with career choices. I am intrigued by the concept of “following your gut” — something most of us are discouraged from doing, because we aren’t being sufficiently objective. Discernment isn’t something most of us are really trained in growing up. I’ve gotten better over time, but still find it hard to understand what I’m feeling/why I’m feeling it “deep down” at my core — and then how to act on that. Throw in major life changes, and it gets harder. But this is so encouraging to read. To remember that you can still follow your instincts and dreams EVEN IF it’s hard!

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Moni'sMeals August 25, 2011

You are so amazing, how many times have I said that by the way!
You are a hero and lets just give you your own show right about now! :)

Great post, IMPRESSIVE. INSPIRATIONAL. AND MOTIVATIONAL.

I love what I do too and feel blessed everyday. Dreams can come true!

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Ashley August 25, 2011

Great post! I just quit my full time job in the corporate world to return to school and pursue my passion in nutrition. At the same time, we moved from Kansas City to Portland. Needless to say, this time in my life has been a little scary, not knowing exactly what the future will hold for me, but I’m excited!

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lynn @ the actor's diet August 25, 2011

love this post! i am all about doing what you love – i’ve spent an entire life dealing with the negativity that comes with being an actress, but the outcome is well worth it.

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Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance August 25, 2011

I admire you so much for following your heart, Angela. I was pressured into putting all of my energy into the legal field, although I knew deep down that it wasn’t what I wanted to do. Today, I’ve backed out of it– and I’m enjoying life more than ever :D

You and your blog have been such an inspiration to me, as a college student in the midst of making major life decisions. I probably wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for your story.

Thank you for sharing with us :)

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Andrea August 25, 2011

wow what a timely post for me and I see for many of your followers. I love your question about what we liked as children. 2 things popped in to my mind immediately when I read that and those two things were related to some choices I have been considering for my future. Thanks so much for posting this! You just confirmed what I had been thinking.

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tuula August 25, 2011

A great book on this is “Finding Your Own North Star” by Martha Beck.

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Tracy @ Commit To Fit August 25, 2011

Great post, so inspiring!

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Irina @ Perfect Paradox World August 25, 2011

Wow these are all fantastic suggestions! I’m in a transitional phase of life right now (just graduated from college) and it’s been extraordinarily difficult to adjust to this new chapter.

The suggestion that resonated most with me is actually one that I have used throughout college- look back at who you were in childhood! Childhood is an unadulterated version of who we are deep inside :)

Great post!

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Dutchgirl Sam August 25, 2011

Love this post, thank you for sharing.

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Melanie August 25, 2011

Loved this post! Thanks for sharing!

I let go of a job that I had had for 18 years two years ago. It was a very tough decision to make, partly because I was worried about the money I was letting go and partly I was worried about letting go of my identity. I think the latter was the hardest part. I was making the career change to work with my husband in our business, but when you’ve been identified as doing a certain type of work so long, it’s hard to let that go. I think a huge part of making a career change is letting go of that part of yourself that says “I am ___________ and this is what I do”. So many times in social situations, people don’t want to know who you are–just what you do. Maybe society has to change how we view people. Anyway, I think the key is to come to terms with the fact that you are going to be doing something that you love/enjoy and that it doesn’t matter what others are thinking or going to think of you because of it.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) August 25, 2011

Wow I can imagine that must have been so tough on you. Congrats for having the courage to try something new. A reader earlier mentioned, ‘what’s next’ and I think it sounds so much better than ‘well that didnt work out’.

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Living, Learning, Eating August 25, 2011

Good for you!

I have to admit…I’m worried about whether medicine is really the right career for me, or if I’m just doing it because I’m *supposed* to. My hobbies (fiction writing, reading, acting, traveling, being outside, discussing international affairs and culture, fashion, and baking) are all not exactly great foundations for a secure future.

And, since my dad was unemployed for 5 years and is still unhappily underemployed, I put a lot of emphasis on career security…

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Jenny @ Simply Be...me August 25, 2011

I feel like I have been in school my whole life – degrees, diploma’s, certificates, etc. and am just now figuring out “what I want to be when I grow-up.” I have had many jobs but no career, and honestly the best jobs I have had are the ones that don’t require me to sit in an office all day. Variety is the spice of life and I think that is why blogging is so attractive and rewarding for many of us. We get to try on many hats and decide what works for us and makes us who we are.

My current job requires me to sit in front a computer and “look busy” all day. I am unfulfilled and many of my talents are wasted and unrecognized, but I know this is not where I will work for the rest of my life. It’s all part of the master plan. This job allows me to work on my blog, connect with other bloggers and hone my photoshop/illustrator/InDesign skills – and I still get all my work done!

I am slowly taking the steps to make the necessary changes beginning with a reduced work week starting in September. This will allow me to spend more time at home with my son, and will also reduce the financial aspect of daycare. And I don’t lose any of my mat leave time I have saved up in anticipation of baby #2 we are planning for in the next year or so.

The best part of the Master Plan? When my husband and I talk about our future careers we are both on the exact same page :)

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cathy August 25, 2011

i love when you talk about your university education, career choices, tough decisions…your story is one with which i can identify, but i also think you are such a positive example of how to take charge of your life.
i left teaching for retail at the running store…yup, family members still don’t get it, i have a tiny clothing/entertainment budget…but i dance in to work every day with a smile, and that is what counts the most.
thanks so much for this post, angela!

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Dorota August 25, 2011

Angela,
Thanks for a beautiful and inspiring post. I’m particularly impressed by how well you planned and prepared for your career move.

I’d actually love to know more about what you do today and how you run your bakery. Is your bakery at home or somewhere else? Do you still feel isolated since you have no co-workers? What is your typical day like at the bakery? How do you like growing and owning a business as opposed to being a regular employee. I’d love for you to write a post on it!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) August 26, 2011

Hey Dorata,
Thanks for your comment :) Great questions too. I have some info on my bakery on my FAQ page that may answer some of your questions.
As for the isolation, yes working from home is isolating at times, especially in the Winter. I have gotten used to it for the most part, and because of my blog I don’t really ever feel ‘alone’ if that makes sense. When I do get lonely I usually go to a coffee shop or have a friend over for lunch to help break up the day.

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Dorota August 30, 2011

Thanks for the answer Angela! I work from home as well, which is why I ask :) Having someone over for lunch is a good idea!

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Corinne August 25, 2011

Thank you! I’m at a fork right now, my contract of over 3 yrs is ending (and I started it as I was finishing my M.Sc. too). I don’t know where I’ll be next week and it has me feeling anxious, embarrassed, stressed. I am liberated because it is not my dream job, just was a good fit and transition, but I worry a lot about what family will think as I am out of work and ‘unproductive.’ I know I have to press on and wait for my ideal job/career to present itself.

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Cindy Robinson August 25, 2011

Thank you, thank you, Angela! I feel like this post was shouting at me. I have finally found my passion in life. And although I’m not sure exactly where to go with it, I have decided the field I’m in, is not for me. All of those fears above reflect how I’m feeling. I even started a blog because I feel it helps to write (I’ve used alot of your tips on how to beat negative thinking), and I think it will help my creativity (even though I only have one post! Ha Ha!). You’re a beautiful inspiration on the inside, as well as out ;)
Cindy Robinson

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Melissa August 25, 2011

Wow, what a wonderful post! I just just graduated with a degree in exercise physiology with a minor in nutrition, and I have no Idea what I should be doing! Positions in my field are all over the place and not so clear cut as other degrees. My passion is really nutrition and thats what I am going for! Wether it takes more school or not, it is what I truly want :) Thank you!

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Lauren August 25, 2011

Thank you for this post. I always leave your blog feeling uplifted and inspired. :) One of the most important things for me since starting college (I’ll be a junior in a few weeks) is realizing that no matter what I’m doing, if I’m happy, I’m doing it right.

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Amber K August 25, 2011

I have the hardest time with this. I’m trying to determine what sort of job I would like, if I should go back to school, if I do go back to school what I should take, etc. And I can never use the advice of what you loved to do as a kid and/or what you do to procrastinate because I just don’t see how I can turn them into jobs. As a child as now I listen to music, read a book, or watch TV. That’s about it, when I have free time I do one of those three things. And when I was younger I did one (or a combo) of those things for hours at a time. And when I hung out with friends we would go to the movies, listen to music, or watch TV.

Now if someone could just pay me to read a book or watch TV I’d be set! Especially since I’m not really a fan of rehashing what I’ve read or watched. I just like to absorb. It’s when I have to spit back out what I have “learned” that I lose interest. Which is why I always hated reading for school. I might have actually liked the book, but if I have to discuss it in depth and overanalyze the thing to death I just get bored.

All I have wanted for the past few years is to be a mom, but even after five years of trying I’m just not having any luck! And being a stay-at-home mom wouldn’t pay me anything either…I wouldn’t want the amount of money to affect my decision. But something would be nice!

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Julie (A Case of the Runs) August 25, 2011

Can I take this opportunity to vent?

First of all, we’re “major” twins! My undergraduate degree was in Psychology. I went on to get an MS and PhD in a business type psychology. Currently work in Human Resources in talent management (finding and developing successors to people’s positions), which is rather fun at times, even if it’s data-analysis intensive (I actually like that aspect).

I would say I’m doing what I want now… always wanted to “help people,” but there are LOTS of ways to “help people.” I didn’t want to be a researcher (did that) or clinician, so business psychology was my way to help others in something they do a lot (which is work… you spend more waking time at work than with your own family — true!).

BUT, with times like these, it has been VERY hard to nail down something, and it is very painful to think that all those years in school and planning has not quite worked out. I’m remaining hopeful, but I admit to blitzing resumes to anyplace I think I might qualify and have received a poor response. It seems like my education is now working against me when it comes to choosing people for professional-level jobs.

I thought about starting my own business, but I’m honestly not ready for that right now. I just want to find some corporate gig and then start a family in a few years. A career would be somewhat secondary, but I just want some stability (ie, not moving from job to job every year). I often feel so trapped. Kudos to those who are smart and daring enough to carve their own paths!

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