How do you cope with regret?
There is an endless variety of jobs available, from software engineer, to anesthesiologist, to landscape architect. Most people are not simply skilled in one area, but in multiple arenas of study. There are many times I have overheard conversations of jobholders wishing they had entered this profession instead of that, while they still had the chance. With a large possibility for regret concerning an occupation, how do you handle this should it arise?
#emotional-intelligence #decision-analysis #reflection #career-counseling
And it’s not true, either.
Keep in mind that the chief benefit of a college education is the acquisition of critical thinking skills. You don’t have those, yet, but you will, and as they come to you, better decisions will be simple. For now, don’t be too hard on yourself.
I specifically attended a large university (LSU) so that I could taste a range of interests, from animal husbandry to English to history to…get the picture? In the end, I followed my heart with a degree in Classics (Latin and Greek). Along with the concomitant coursework, this was the greatest gift I could I have given myself: proudly identifying as a liberally educated person. What it did not give me, though, is a job! I wasn’t opposed to PhD, but work for classics teachers is slim.
Then I learned I could obtain an MLA without a design background, as long as I completed prerequisite work, without credit. Took me 4 years and three summers. Now, 30+ years later, I’ve had a very successful career, mostly owning my own firm, and I’ve made a great deal of money. I am a tropical plant expert and love my life.
My general advice is this: you need not make a specific decision at your young age. Matriculate in some type of general studies. pend a year on campus. You will find that every profession is a process from th general to the specific. So, in your early years, thumb through the catalog, take courses that interest you, and have fun.
Regret can weigh heavily if you give it a primary focus. What are the things that you are passionate about? Make a list of those things and research possible career opportunities. Reach out to a company to see if they would be willing to let you shadow someone on the job to see what it is like.
Ask questions about what that person likes and dislikes about the work they do to get a perspective. It's OK too if what you thought was your passion changes down the road. It's important to work at something that is going to make you happy and fulfilled.
Wishing you success and happiness in your career decision!
Regret can be an inevitable part of life. We're always going to be hit with questions of "what-if" be it in careers or personal choices. I know I've been hit with my own share of questioning whether this path was the right one, or if I should have pursued a career in STEM or artistic endeavors, or any number of other possibilities.
I think the best way to cope with regret is to be involved in your interests anyway. There can be a life outside of work. For myself, I volunteer in performance arts groups and festivals outside of work to still fulfill those interests, I keep friends in technical fields who I can talk science with, and I'll follow literature for all sorts of eclectic fields. While work inevitably takes up a large portion of our lives we can still explore other interests by being well rounded individuals. And if you do find yourself wishing to change career later in life it isn't impossible--you just have to stay open to change.
Thank you for a very valid question.
My mom always told me that "it's never too late, and you're never too old to learn". I keep this piece of advice close by always.
That said, if I decided that my current occupation isn't for me any longer I would look at my next career position and find out what would be required to start and succeed at it. For example what field of study would I need to embark on, which schools offer the courses I need to take, how long will it take, how much will it cost, is there a need for the profession, speak to someone in the profession etc.
"<span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34);">Choose a job </span>you love, and you will never<span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34);"> have to </span>work a day in your life<span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34);">.</span>" - Confuscius