General chatter - In serious need of advice!

View Full Version : In serious need of advice!

11-15-2006, 12:03 AM
WARNING! This is horribly, insanely, absurdly long. READ AT YOU OWN RISK : )

I’m in need of some serious advice here. Okay, to start from the beginning, I always knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. Even though my “career” changed every year or two, I still had that flat-out certainty that I will succeed in whatever job that was going to have. Well, now that the time has come to make my decision (i.e. college application), I’m at loss at what to do. I’m not sure what I want out of life. I want the very best, but I don’t want to work hard at it. I want it all or nothing. I want a lot of money. I want to be happy. I want to help people, but there’s a lot of work to do on me first. I want to be happy. I want people to look up to me. I want to make a difference. I just want to be happy.

I’ve narrowed everything I want to do/be into the aspects of two different jobs. Graphic designer or Nutritionist/Personal Trainer (that’s more like three…). Two completely different subjects, two things perfect for me. The problem here is that I’m not sure I’m into art as people think I am. True, I’m pretty decent at drawing—but I just do it ‘cause I can, not because I like it…It’s something that passes the time in detention or a gift that would help my average at school. I hate being told what to draw; I hate having pressure to get something done. I especially hate it when I see people better than I am; it makes me jealous to the point that I put off drawing for a week or two. That and…working in the field of art, you need to be able to summon creativity on command. I’m not creative at all, and inspiration comes once in a blue moon…THEN I’ll be drawing day and night none stop. Besides, when I’m working on my art for eight hours day, being a graphic designer, what am I gonna go home and do? It’s more like a hobby, to sum it all up lol.

As for my Nutritionist/Personal Trainer…well, I don’t know if it’s one of those fazes I get into every year but I’ve taken a great interest towards my health and well being. What inspired me into contemplating this field was when I went to see a nutritionist and a psychologist when I had a mild case of ED two years ago. I later got myself a personal trainer and still have one up till now. I really like the idea of knowing how everything works in my body. To be able to create my own work out program, know what to eat. I want to help people get fit and live a healthy lifestyle just like that nutritionist and personal trainer did or are doing for me. I want to be admired…m’kay, that sounded a little conceited but I mean, when I got my trainer I was like ‘wow, he really knows what he’s talking about, he’s good!’ I want people to think that of me as well while they see their life change for the better before their eyes. I want people to listen to me when I talk and DO it lol.

I would apply for Health in college in a HEARTBEAT. See, that’s not the problem. The problem is…okay, I don’t know how it works in other parts of the world but here in Canada, in grade 10 there’s Math and Physics 416, 426 and 436. Then in grade 11 there’s 516, 526 and 536. You get the idea, each one harder than the other. To enter Physical Science for the personal training career, you need math 436. Okay, not so bad. Just one summer at adult school. But to enter in Health for Nutrition, you’re going to need Math 436-536, Chemistry and Physics 536. All I have is math and physics 416 and 516. HOW in the world will I manage to make it? I can go into pathways in college to get my missing requirements but that’s an entire year of nothing but intense math, science and chemistry. It could probably be because I go to a French school, but math simply does NOT enter in my head. Probably in college, which is (thank God) English, things would be much easier. I could already imagine myself locked up in my room, studying non-stop, living off dictionary paper or something.

But then I wonder, is this job really worth it? I don’t like working hard for anything…but I’m definitely sure that it will all be worth it in the end.

Even my own mom has no hope in me. She tells me—almost pressures me—to go into Graphic Design ‘cause she’s sure I won’t be able to take the workload handed in Health. Saying that makes me want to prove her wrong so bad.

Why should I walk the easy path all the time? Should I actually work hard this time? Knowing me, I might drop out in the middle of it all. I’d stress out. I’d cry. I’d be overwhelmed. I’d freak out. I’d drop out and become a manager at the pet store just like the ones I work with…

I’m so confuzzled : (

Thank you all so much for taking the time to read this! I really appreciate it. Many thanks in advance to those who reply!

Oh by the way, here's a link to some art I've done in the past...for those who are interested. The colored pics are all done with the mouse on Photoshop 7.0. -->

Oh and I really missed this site and everyone on it! It's nice to be back even though I don't have much input here lol :3

11-15-2006, 12:42 AM
I am in the middle of my undergraduate university degree right now... and if there's anything I can suggest at all it is: study what you are interested in.

Life is work...

Work can be pleasurable or it can be unpleasant. That's why I suggest you study what you are interested in, so that it leads you to a career you are interested in, so that you are more able to enjoy yourself when you are working and your work becomes pleasurable. Sometimes there will be stress, sometimes there will be hardship and disappointments, but there is also much potential for success, growth, and contribution... I guess it depends on the direction we want to steer ourselves in.

Perhaps I misunderstood you?

Iím at loss at what to do. Iím not sure what I want out of life. I want the very best, but I donít want to work hard at it. I want it all or nothing.

I don't want to generalize and I don't want to dissaude you... but rarely do we receive the very best. Most often, we achieve the very best, and achievements again, require hard work.

What would your life be like if you had it all? What are you referring to when you say "the very best"? What would it be like if you had nothing? What would it be like if you didn't have it all but you didn't have nothing, if you had some things? Why do you want people to look up to you?

11-15-2006, 12:59 AM
Nothing in life that is truly worth having is easy. Go for what you really want and in the end, you'll be glad you did.

11-15-2006, 01:11 AM
First off...

Neither one of those jobs will make you MAD MONEY ;)

I'd say go after what you LOVE and bust your butt at making it work for you. If you want to understand the human body, you are going to have to hole up with some science and math books, yes. If you want it, you can get through it with determination and maybe some tutoring and some primo study buddies in your study group.

Plus, don't freak out entirely now because the first 2 years of college will consist of nailing down (hopefully) what you love and going for it. I never even took one class in my declared major that I put on all my applications (that would have been Journalism.) Instead I graduated with a BA in Archaeology and a minor in Classics!

And now...

I'm a Graphic Artist, I do print work in Massachusetts. It's a living. It's creative sometimes (on command) and my job is constantly pushed forward on deadlines. I love it some days, on other days it drives me to drink. Not kidding ;)

Graphic Arts can pay much better if you lean more towards web design. It's what all the hip kids are studying these days, heh!


You wrote:
I want the very best, but I donít want to work hard at it. I want it all or nothing. I want a lot of money. I want to be happy. I want to help people, but thereís a lot of work to do on me first. I want to be happy. I want people to look up to me. I want to make a difference. I just want to be happy.

Ok, first, what IS the very best to you? Just money? Not saying that's bad, I just want to know.

Second, if you have very high desires, you are 99% likely going to have to drive hard to get what you want. Otherwise all us slackers would be tooling around with Trump, know what I'm saying? :D

I see a lot of you wanting to be happy. Again, cool. Me too :) But how in your case? What does this mean in your mind?

If you want to "make a difference" and have people look up to you, let me say sometimes in those careers, you don't make a lot of money, and it can be hard and some days can be sad or tough (like with teaching, social work, Peace Corps, even personal trainer in a gym).

Look within yourself and weigh your options, your talents, your work ethic and your intellectual drive. What job would you think you'd like best to go to every day?

Even better, go see if you can "interview" some people who DO the jobs you are pondering and really listen to what they have to say. That can be a BIG HELP.

Good luck! :)

11-15-2006, 10:56 AM
I know when I started going to college, people would say that the chances of changing your major are high. Many people go into college thinking one thing and come out doing another thing. Also, I've known many people who even graduated from college in one field but work in a completely different field.

I told people "not me, I'm never changing my mind". After a year, I changed my mind. See I love medicine, I really do like studying it and I thought I wanted to be a doctor. I found out about myself that I had no interest in being a doctor, I only had interest in studying medicine. Well I figured going to school for 8 years or so just to study something and not actually do it wasn't my best option. So I switched to something that I enjoyed and still enjoy although I'm not sure if I'll go for a career change later on.

So what I would say is go with what you really like to do. Your plans may change and your life may go another direction but if you go for what you love to do then at least that gives you some direction.

11-15-2006, 11:54 AM
Let's see:

You don't want to work hard.
You want to make a lot of money.
You want to be viewed as successful by others.
You spend enough time in detention to have a favorite pasttime while you are there.
You don't like deadlines or being told what to do and are jealous of those whose skills exceed yours so you pout for a couple of days afterward.

I'll be 40 years old this year. I've learned a lot about life and myself since I was in 10th grade. I know that I'm not doing anything close to what I thought I was going to be doing with my degree. I know that some days I really like it, but other days I'd like to throw myself out the window. But you know what, that's life. And that's why it's called "work" and not "vacation".

My advice (and you asked for it) is that you should concentrate less on what you want to be when you grow up and spend more time growing up. I don't know how it works in Canada, but most degree plans have a core curriculum. The only difference between a BS and a BA core curriculum is some extra math and science classes or some extra English classes. Either of your interests right now seem to share the BS track. You could start there, spend some time volunteering in homeless or domestic violence shelters (if you really want to help people) and grow up.

11-15-2006, 09:42 PM
I agree with all the comments of these fabulous ladies! I'll also add that once you get into college, things definitely change. You see possibilities you never knew of before, you find out what really interests you and what you just can't make yourself care about, and then you try to nagivate your way to a degree accordingly. Also, there are all kinds of jobs out there that don't have a set degree: people with teaching degrees become teachers and with law degrees become lawyers, but what about English and Psychology and Political Science? Talk to an advisor, tell them what you're interested in, and you'll find out all kinds of careers that you never even knew existed.

11-15-2006, 10:20 PM
Thank you all for your advice! It's actually just what I needed.

BershireGrl and BeautifulOne, when I say I want the very best, all or nothing and so on, I mean that-- well, I grew up around so many adults that are not where they thought they would be right now, they hate their 9 to 5 jobs and the only reason they would never think of changing is because they are trying to support their family, themselves etc. I don't ever want to be like least I hope I won't be like that. No routine, no repetetive tasks, don't want my life to be mundane, chained to a job I don't enjoy day after day. The thought alone scares me.

I wanted to be a fashion designer at some point. I wanted to make it as big as Gucci but if that won't happen, then I won't even think of going into fashion.

Kateful, I know...I want and want but never DO. I'm not expecting a vacation out of my job, but I'm hoping it would be something I'd enjoy going to everyday and not dread the days. Everything that's happened and still happening is helping me grow up. Sorry if I sounded childish in my post, I really didn't mean to. Guess I'm expecting way too much out of myself in the futur, that I'd end up severly dissapointed if I won't be everything I hoped I would be.

Happiness would be no finance problems, peace with my self, good friends, being a healthy person and on good terms with family. Doesn't a job play a big role in stress? I'm not saying that I want a job that's a happy peaceful walk in the park, but something that has more ups than downs.

But you're all right. I'll just go with the flow, but keep a goal in my head at the same time. I'm going to get my chemistry, math, and physics grades because it would be useful for me whether I go into health or not. My biggest concern was just whether I should go with what's tough yet rewarding or easy though bland.

Thank you all again! :)

11-15-2006, 10:31 PM
If you don't want your life to be "mundane", stay away from the job you describe as "bland."

And not going into Fashion just cause you won't be as big as Gucci? Is that like not being religious cause you're not going to be Mother Theresa? Or not being into science because you won't be Stephen Hawking II? :lol: Girl, you got some years ahead of you.... heehee!

Go for the challenges -- what you love -- and be ready to work hard if need be.

11-15-2006, 11:14 PM
"No routine", "No repetitive tasks"?? Are you kidding? Seriously. Are you?

I cannot think of one single job that is different every day. If you are personal trainer, do you not think you'll hear the same lame excuses day after day from 8 different people? If you are a graphics designer, do you not think you'll have virtually the same issues to resolve just with different pictures? Vets have the same diseases to diagnose, but different dogs. Teachers have the same lesson plans, but different students. Chefs have the same meals, but different patrons or the same ingredients but different sauces. Lawyers have the same laws and the same crimes just different accused to either defend or prosecute. I have the same crap, just different days.

I'm afraid that real life is going to be sorely disappointing to you. Even the people I know who report loving their jobs (and they are few), don't like every single thing about it. In fact, when you start to do something you "love" for a living, it often becomes not so fun anymore. I like to write silly poetry. But you stick a deadline on that and it becomes a job. You know what I mean?

So unless there's an opening for "Woman of Leisure", you might need to lower your expectations a bit so that you can be pleased with what real life has to offer. I know I probably sound like a bitter old woman to you, but sometimes I guess realism can be mistaken for bitterness. The truth is that I'm very happy with my life which encompasses much more than my job. I have outside interests. I have a supportive husband whom I love. I have great kids, comfortable home, good friends, loving church family, all that stuff. My job is the smallest part of me.

And although I'll be forty this year, I'm not convinced that I am what I want to be when I grow up. I don't think you will be, either. And that's not necessarily a bad thing.

11-15-2006, 11:32 PM
How old are you? I get the feeling you are in high school, in which case my advice is "CALM DOWN!!!!!" No one knows what to do at your age! Do you know why so many degrees have similiar core classes? It's so people can take a variety of classes and figure out what they do and don't like. I got a degree in theatre when I was 21. I'm now 25 and just about to graduate with a degree in Special Education. If you told me when I was 18, I'd be working with special needs pre-schoolers, I'd have laughed in your face.

I swear, I'm not trying to be mean! But you are young, and I promise you have PLENTY of time to figure this out. My dad just finished his Masters Degree and he is 51. This is after him spending 30 years at a job he hates. It is never too late to figure out what you want to do.

There are lots of jobs that involve drawing or helping people. You shouldn't limit yourself to those two choices. This link lists every occupation you can think. It tells you what salaries and trainings you need.

Good luck!

11-15-2006, 11:33 PM
OK, what you might consider doing is checking out not just your local training centre, but colleges throughout Quebec and Montreal. Here is a link for Saint Lawrence College - Kingston campus:
You will find a two year program called "Fitness and Health Promotion" under the Health Sciences section. The requirements for admission are a high school diploma and the pre-requisites are Grade 12 English and Math at either the College or University level, and Grade 11 or 12 Biology. If you go to this website:
you will find information about programs at all Ontario colleges, and the out-of-province academic requirements.
If you really, really want it, you MIGHT have to upgrade your marks and/or courses. Such is life. The question is:
If so, the extra work won't be an issue.
If the extra work will be a problem, you probably aren't prepared for an intense study program at this point in your life.
To get to where I am, I had to complete a 3-year undergraduate degree and finish in the top 1% of ALL graduates marks-wise BEFORE I even could APPLY to the professional program of my choice.
Suck it up and dig in, if you want it. Life success is about choices and HARD WORK. The rest is up to you.
Best of luck!

11-16-2006, 12:23 AM
Heh, ouch. Thank you all for the reality check. I needed a good kick in the bum. I guess I shouldn't be hyperventilating at the thought of not being able to make an almighty difference in this world :S ...or at least in a few people's lives.

And thanks for the links, they really helped.

K, I get. I'll relax, do more research, keep my options open, work hard, enjoy what I have right now, and try not to think too much into it...


11-16-2006, 04:28 AM
Very few of my friends actually ended up doing what they thought they would be doing when they started college. In fact, most of them, including myself, haven't even ended up doing the work that their major prepared them for. I know several people who made it all the way through law school and even passed the bar and ended up doing something completely different.

If, back when I was in college, someone had told me what my career would turn out to be (and how much I would enjoy it), I would have laughed out loud or scoffed in utter disbelief. All of my friends would have done the same--really, no one could have predicted this career for me. In my experience, it's very hard to know what you are going to enjoy in a job until actually have some work experience behind you that is more meaningful than your typical high school job.

So my advice would be to take the courses you are interested in. If you decide you aren't interested in them after all, take different courses. Don't worry about what you want to be; you've got your whole life to work that out. College should be about higher learning and expanding your horizons, not about preparing for a specific job (that's what a vocational school is).

11-16-2006, 11:50 AM
I started college as a history major. Then I switched to journalism. Then I toyed around with being an occupational therapist. Then I discovered midwifery.

Is birth ever mundane and repetitive? Nope, but, I had to laugh at Kate's reference to hearing the same excuses over and over. Yeah, I get that a lot. And the politics suck. And the malpractice crisis should be enough to drive anyone with an ounce of common sense completely out of the childbirth field.

So, what I do is HARD but important and I would take that any day of the week over something easy.

Do something you are PASSIONATE about. And don't worry if you are not passionate about anything now. If someone would have told me in high school there would be days my shoes would be soaked in a variety of other people's body fluids, I would never have believed it.

Your life will evolve. Who knows what your future holds?? Get a good liberal arts foundation, with lots of math and science, and explore the possibilities.

11-16-2006, 02:07 PM
I'm really, really glad to hear that you are taking a deep breath! You have alot of time ahead of you, and life experiences ahead, too. I think what you really might benefit from is really researching all of your options with respect to your future career. Once you know what you want, and what you have to do to get it, the path ahead will be clear. I think it is easy to look ahead and see oneself as fabulous in the career that was chosen, but harder to forsee the work that you have to do to get there.
At the risk of being cliche, it IS true that anything worth getting requires alot of hard work, or else everyone else would be there right now!
If I were to be in your shoes, I would:
1. decide on 2 or 3 career paths
2. research the colleges in Quebec, Ontario, and New Brunswick (at least!)
3. find out the prerequisite courses, and obtain them
4. add a couple of others at the Grade 12 level to make my application competitive
5. with respect to fitness and health careers, research at the YMCA to see if you can volunteer a bit or shadow a fitness professional for a bit to see if you like the job (THIS LOOKS GREAT ON AN APPLICATION, AND ANYONE YOU WORK WITH WILL BE ABLE TO PROVIDE A REFERENCE!)
6. study hard, apply to as many places as possible when the time comes
7. sit back and see what happens.
Sounds pretty uptight, but I think that by failing to plan, you actually plan to fail!!!
Keep us informed!

11-16-2006, 07:45 PM
I think you should wait to go to college.
If you can't decide what you like and the classes are too intimidating for you right now (and I also got a hint of wanting *instant gratification* in your post), then wait to go to college.... work for awhile, live on your own, LEARN WHO YOU ARE, get a taste of reality....
Before anyone wants to flame me for that.... take my case:
I graduated high school in 99. I went to college right away, cuz thats what we're *supposed* to do (and we're supposed to know what we want to do for the rest of our lives when we are 17 or 18 yrs old??? I DON'T THINK SO) and I say that with MUCH SARCASM AND EYE ROLLING. I wanted to major in computer information systems because I was really good with computers. I went to school for half a semester and quit because I was tired of school and wanted a life. It was the best decision I ever made in my life; if I wouldn't have quit, I would have a degree that I don't want (which at the time I thought was Perfect for me). I returned to college in 2003 after working minimum wage, dead end jobs, learning what it means to make ends meet, and getting no respect for my efforts. I knew who I was, I knew I what I wanted; I was ready to make my life. Now, I'm one semester away from graduating with a Bachelor's degree in Nursing with a 3.8 GPA. The flip side to the story is that I swore up and down for most of my life that I would never be a nurse because it is horrible job and I didn't want to do what my parents did (both are BSN RNs)...and it ended up being the best fit for me. I am 100% certain this is where I was meant to be.
I go to school with too many people who: 1. expect to have college handed to them; 2. have no clue about what life is really like; 3. expect instructors to cater to their needs; 4. expect to make buckets of money immediately after graduation.
Frankly, they need to grow up. You might want to make a bunch of money, but you HAVE TO PAY YOUR DUES FIRST.
Seriously, you should live a little before making such a big investment and find out if you are really making the best decision.

11-16-2006, 10:12 PM
I agree with what most people said...

I just want to make sure we tell you something... you don't have to have it figured out. I know you may want to, we all do.. but if you don't, that's okay. Work hard doing what you like and do your best with what you don't like... work for the good of others and for your good... and stay open to possibilities/opportunities. Overtime, things should become more and more clear... finding out and learning about ourselves is a big part of what this whole process if all about. And this learning knows no age boundaries.

good luck!