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What should I do when I want to have a career but also continue my hobby?

I love physics and mathematics but I also want to follow my hobby i.e. dancing with it. So what should I do so that I can have a good job and also focus on dancing. career-choice

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Alanna’s Answer

Hi there!

Similar to you, I grew up loving STEM and the arts and found myself always being put in the position to choose one or the other. From experience, you can do both!

If you are interested in having a stable job with a reliable track for success, I would very much encourage you to study physics and math because it would be required for any job or profession you will want to pursue in that realm. If you want to work in the "dance world," you dont necessarily NEED to go to an arts academy / college / program and you cannot guarantee the stable income, as it is a "gig" economy (few long term positions exist past a year or so, and those of that length are even hard to find). You will truly have to work for it every day, 24/7, but with the right determination (and the right network) you can make it happen. And if you choose dance, plan your future very carefully (whether it be opening a dance studio or choreographing after you cannot dance yourself, etc.) because the reality is, no one can dance forever. I know people who went to college for STEM related majors and then "tried to make it in the dance world" for a few years after. Honestly, some made it and some did not, but everyone with a degree or certification or some educational background in STEM was able to make a career for themselves after dance.

Personally, I went to college and majored in STEM and as such, decided I wanted dance to be my love and not my career. As such, in college, I competed with a dance team (which kept me dancing at a high level so I was still challenged). It was sometimes a lot to manage but very much doable, especially if you join a college team. Once getting a full time job, I joined a few recreational competitive teams which proved to be my perfect outlet. These types of groups are great; I would also encourage you to look into just doing drop in classes at studios when you can. Or look into volunteering to help teach dance to kids. Those can be short or long term commitments depending on where.

In short, you can have BOTH! It's just about time management and finding the right place that works into your schedule. Good luck with everything and keep on dancing!!
Thank you so much! Well.. now I am clear about my career even more.. shonali M.
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Victoria’s Answer

I would definitely pursue a career in physics and mathematics and find something that you enjoy doing in those fields. I liked physics and mathematics as well and studied crystallography, but ended up in Finance. I have a great job that allows me to live comfortably and have a successful career, but I also love dancing. I take adult tap classes at night and perform a couple times a year. Another way to continue with your hobby is to get some kind of certification and use it to teach in the evenings, or maybe at some point if you decide to take a few years off to raise kids you can do it to get yourself out of the house.
Thank you so much for such a helpful answer! shonali M.
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Kayla’s Answer

Hi Shonali!

Many people can relate to this issue. I have a lot of interests as well. I remember taking a test in college that looked at 8 specific areas of interest; I scored equally high on 6 of the 8 areas. I asked my professor what this meant, and he explained that I would either need to A) find a diverse career that met all of my interests or B) find a career that met some of my interests and utilize my hobbies to fulfill the rest of my interests.

I would suggest thinking about your purpose. What brings you joy? What do you find fulfillment in? What do you value? Finding a purpose in your work will be the most beneficial in choosing the career for you. However, your career is not the only place where you can find fulfillment. If you want to continue dancing as a hobby, you just need to make that a priority. This may be accommodating your work schedule to attend weekly classes or teaching a class yourself. Every working person must learn to balance their work and home life, so knowing what you find value in and prioritize will help you in the long run.
Thank you so much for your helpful answer! shonali M.
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Brayden’s Answer

I think the idea of being able to pursue your passion of math and physics as well as enjoy things on the side (dance) is very feasible. With your interest in physics and math there are a ton of jobs that require these fields. Another area you might consider is engineering because in the case of physics your first 2 years of school are identical to engineering so its not something you have to decide right away. Both physics and math are challenging but in a positive, where you are able to push yourself academically and then enjoy dance on the side. As a current engineering student I find that its very important to have interests outside of school that challenge you in a different way than school does. I find that when I'm only focusing on school then I tend see a decrease in performance on exams and homework's so having a balance is huge. Overall I think you are on a good track to finding success later in life! Good luck!
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Carlos’s Answer

I love tech stuff and work doing that.
I also love drawing, photography, biking, playing guitar, etc.

Working in tech allows me to do a lot of tech stuff (obviously) and make enough to enjoy those other things in my free time. If I was working in one of those other fields, it would likely be more challenging to make enough or have enough time to branch out into other things due to how competitive those industries can be.

Just something to consider as you make your way forward. Good luck, whatever you do!
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