I Stopped Figuring Out My “One True Calling” and Started Identifying My Calls
Here’s another Katie’s Oldies but Goldies! (HAHAHA I should really stop using that lame name now, I know. But I can’t help it somehow???)
Hey everyone! Just wanna let you know that at the time of editing this post, I’m still alive. Not as preoccupied and llama-wailing as last week, thank goodness. Saturday’s post miiiight be a new one. Might. If I find the time. Until then, I will be a lurker in the blogosphere whenever I find the free time to open Reader.
Hope y’all are doing great! 🙂 Now, onto the post…
I always admired how my sister knew exactly what she wanted. Like me, she devoured series like the Harry Potter series and A Series of Unfortunate Events when she was eight or nine. On her fifth grade, she was already writing her very own novel in an unused composition notebook.
By the time she was in high school and got exposed to the annual city-wide press conference, she started competing in editorial writing. That was when she realized she loved technical writing more than creative writing. She’s a writer for a local newspaper now and she still types fiercely.
And then there’s me.
You know how as far back as kindergarten we were already asked what we want to be when we grow up? Back in first grade, I really put a lot of thought into this because we were supposed to tell it to the entire class.
So I weighed in my options. I was definitely not going to be a doctor because most of the class already said that. And you can’t have everybody be a doctor, right?? Who’s gonna run the country then? So you know what I wanted to be back in first grade?
And I mean, that’s not an awful job in and of itself. I don’t think I’ll ever have the bravery those admirable miners have every time they go to work. But do you know why I wanted to be a miner???
Because I wanna give poor people some of my wealth.
*sigh* The Seven Dwarfs definitely contributed a lot in my way of thinking back then.
Funny how, when I think about it in retrospect, adults just ask this question because they find children already thinking of their future adorable.
Like six-year-old innocent Kate who is still free of any cynicism in her body.
But over and over, I am asked this question from grade school to high school and even now in college. It may have evolved into different forms the older I get but it’s still the same:
“What do you want to be when you grow up?”
“What’s your ambition?”
“What are you taking in college?”
“What do you do?”
I’m now usually asked the third one. And when I answer Accountancy, it’s always followed by either, “Oh! You’re so smart then!” or “Wow! So you wanna be a CPA someday?”
And the thing is, I don’t think I’m that smart–I’m merely hanging by a thread at this point. And I don’t want to be a CPA. (At least not for long.) This question about my career is always a daunting reminder that I barely have a plan for my future.
See, we’re that consumed on thinking about career. We like to put this kind of expectations to our young folks, reasoning that they have to be ready when they step out into the real world. As if the world we young adults are living right now isn’t the real world.
Related read: I Don’t Think the Real World is Out There
But what if they still don’t know what they want to do? Most likely scenario? They get thrown with so many negative responses.
“What an irresponsible child.”
“Stop being indecisive.”
“You can’t keep playing your whole life, kid.”
“You shouldn’t be wasting your time.”
Don’t you think that seemed…. I don’t know, unfair?
Not everyone is like my sister. Not everyone knows what they want to do. Some of us are still patting our way into this dark maze called life. And you know what?
Not having everything figured out is okay.
And so, if you are also on the verge of wrapping yourself around the same thoughts I mentioned above, here’s what you can think instead:
<3 It’s not irresponsible to not know what you want. Not when the options could be too many for you to handle and you’re overwhelmed.
<3 It may seem indecisive, but I would rather weigh in my options carefully than pick a choice quick.
<3 It’s not playing if you are trying to think real hard about your career.
<3 And how can it be a waste of time when you’re trying to learn more about yourself and what you really want?
The awesome blogger behind Personal Dailies said it best in her post, “Do you know what you want to do yet”. That the first 18 years of life is not usually the ideal time to figure out your One True Calling.
We all go through similar things, sure. But when they would happen and how we would respond to them are all unique to each of us. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with trying everything first before picking out what you really want to do. I’ve come to the conclusion that life is a series of trial and errors.
There is no fix thing or an absolute solution.
And if, along the way, you want to change course, it’s your call. Which is what I’d rather want to do. Instead of thinking about my calling, I’ll just start identifying my call.
Kinda cheesy and lame, I know. But that’s just it. No one–not your family or your friends or the school or even Yoda–can tell you how to live your life or pinpoint to you where to find the answers you need. You only need one person. And that’s you.
TALK TO ME: Do you know what your calling is? Or are you like me and still mulling over your choices? Have you recently discovered your calling? If yeah, would you like to share about it? I would love to hear your thoughts! 🙂
Have an inspired, whistle-while-you-work day, awesome peeps! <3
PS. Google Calendar says today is apparently Book Lovers Day*. So shoutout to my fellow bookworms! What are you reading today? Anyone read any book that taught you something career-related?
Also, here are some other articles on early career decisions for youth. Just to let y’all know that, if you’re feeling it, you’re not alone 🙂
Young people are having to take career decisions too early | The Guardian
The Immense Pressure of Career Choice | Psychology Today
I also shared three reasons why it’s okay not to have everything figured out. You can check that post out here~
*I mean… let’s face it. Everyday is Book Lovers Day, amirite???
It’s great to be a well-rounded person, interested and good at more than one thing. It gives you a better outlook on life and enables you to be more educated [is that grammatically correct?] in several topics. It also means you’ll be great at dinner party conversation ;-]
Yes, that’s how I try to think about it 🙂
Why do I love every single of of your posts?
Yes, oh yes, and YES.
I’m still in school at the moment, well holidays right now, but you know what i mean. Whenever someone in my family asks what I want to do, I pause, think, but someone else like a sibling interrupts like ‘OH, she’s definitely going to something english-related because she writes a blog ad likes writing’ or someone else will say ‘well she gets higher grades in maths. she’s doing maths’ all while I sit there you know what?
I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT I’M GOING TO Do.
the truth is I like a lot of different things. I somewhat understand maths greatly, really enjoy writing and really really enjoy drama.ALSO I LOVE coding. Like I do coding in my spare time (GEEK ALERT) I’m not EXACTLY spoilt for choice, but I have no idea what i’m going to do. And like you said that’s okay. i want to to get to know myself better and what i REALLY want to do.
p.s YAY FOR BOO LOVERS DAY!!!!
I painfully relate to this; I don’t know WHAT I’m going to do. But I feel like if you’re too set on something and something goes wrong, it can land you in a whole lot of issues. Thanks so much for this – it’s reassuring to know I’m not alone. I DON’t have a career path set out for me and I think I like it better that way.
I love this, Kate! I am with you and still figuring things out. It gets a little clearer every day, but I am happy taking the time to go over my options and discover what I want. I know many unhappy adults who felt the pressure to jump into something because it is what you are “supposed to do”. They didn’t get the chance to learn who they are and what they want out of life. You’re right, people think that being unsure is irresponsible. I think embracing those unknowns and giving yourself time to try different things is responsible and brave.
Hey Kate, long time no see! This is so very relatable. Until a year ago I was determined that becoming a doctor was the only way to go for me, cause I wanted to make some kind of a difference. Now, though, I am so much happier knowing that psychology is what I really love and while it is not the most original choice, it is still MY choice. It was wonderful to read one of your posts again <3
I KNOW, it’s been forever! I’m really good, how have you been?? So happy to hear from you <3
I know you have an awesome future no matter what you do.
Awww, thank you for the kind words about our site, Kate!! That means so much to us!! 🙂
No problem, Gabriella! I love reading The Hope Girls very much 🙂
I’m done in college and I still cant figure out what I want. That’s just how life is, i guess. Some people can get really lucky to know what they love in life.
I TOTALLY AGREE! A friend of mine knew he wanted to be a doctor since he was in elementary and he’s now in med school acing his exams. People like him are admirable but not everyone is that sure of their future.