Many people go to college to achieve a degree in something which they believe is the “correct thing to do”. In other words, they have no desire to become a lawyer, but going pre-law and preparing for law school is the “responsible” thing to do, what friends and family want and expect, and therefore the only logical choice.
To prepare a career is very often to set in motion what you’ll be doing for the rest of your life on Earth. While many people have adapted themselves to the fine art of self-flagellation, tolerating what they don’t like, and adapting to circumstances, it’s not necessary to live your life this way by selecting to do something you don’t want to do.
The alternative is what I call the college major refinement process. This is essentially finding your goals, ambition, and life-purpose, and then refining it through whatever is being offered at your selected college.
Unfortunately, the selection may not completely fit your inner-desires, but you must find the closest match possible.
The first step you must do is get in touch with yourself and figure out exactly what really inspires you, what keeps you going and gives you the energy to wake up in the morning.
Just lock yourself into your room, sit on a chair (don’t lay on the bed, you’ll fall asleep), and pay attention to those little nagging feelings deep in your subconscious that are feeding you desires and ambitions. Listen carefully.
(If you find the answer to this question is “lots of alcohol” then you should probably stop reading this and find help elsewhere).
You should be both specific, and broad.
For instance, “I really love exciting new worlds and imagination, I love computers and playing computer games. That’s all I ever do”. Guess what? This isn’t the end of the world, there are many exciting fields in computer science and programming, and you will make a lot of money in.
Maybe it’s “I love helping my friends. I’m always giving them advice on the phone and helping them with their relationship problems. It gives me fulfillment”. I’m willing to bet psychiatry is up your alley.
The difficult part of the refinement process is being completely honest with yourself and narrowing down different desires to the single most predominant one. Identifying the overarching thing you want to do in life can be so tricky that students often change their majors in the middle of college as they begin to hear the calling of a new path.
But even if you take up a sudden passion for chopping wood and carving boats, you need to be careful. Is this really your new life-purpose, or just a passing fad or hobby? If you change your major over a fling, you’ll most likely end up changing your major a third time as your motivation dies. You don’t want to be in college for eight years.
So listen carefully, and be very honest with yourself, and you’ll find yourself exactly where you want to be. Do not pick a major or life-purpose based on what other people are telling you to do. You will regret it.