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Do you love your career?

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I am 23. Growing up I had a lot of encouragement that I could do whatever I wanted to do (although I always knew my parents wanted me to be a nurse). Either way, I was always told that if I go to university, get a good education, I will inevitably find my dream job that will lead to a passionate life with financial stability. Well, as an adult I find this has been a huge misconception…I had so many choices that I never chose. I got a Psych degree and a “good” government job, but it’s not very stimulating. I work in a small office all day long with minimal human interaction. I find it very lonely, and I really prefer working in a team environment. And the pay is average.


Anyway, I still dream of finding that dream career that will consume with interest and passion. I am a workaholic by nature, so this government M-F 8:30-4:30 seems quite foreign to me…(I recently picked up a weekend job at the Human Society – yay!)


Do you like your job? What is it? What were some of your best jobs? Any advice?



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I love variety and I'm definitely not a career person. It's taken me some years to come to accept this. I doubt my extended family will ever accept it either unless I make a lot of money on one of my independent ventures. For the most part, I work low paying jobs that change every year, and they often have little to do with each other. For a single guy with no immediate family responsibilities, it works fine for me. But I do want more... so much more. And it's exactly for that reason that I won't take the career track.


You have to do what you love. You have to put your heart into what makes you happy. I know such idealism is often preached against deaf ears to those with spouses and children, and that is understandable, but I believe every person can find a way to make at least a little time to work at something they love.

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There are bound to be some websites out there that tell you all about different career paths you can choose. Your best hope at this point - since you are the perfect age to change paths and find what you love - is to educate yourself.


I worked at NASA for 11 years as an editor of all the technical publications they have to put out to cover all the work and research and findings they do there (a LOT!). I left it for financial reasons - don't get a lot of money working for a NASA contractor, with their ever-shrinkiing budget (thanks, Congress), but I kick myself every single day for leaving the one job I'll ever love. And that job is gone to another person, so I can't get it back.


Now, DD19 is away at college, so I'm going back to school. Either for a science degree so I can get back at NASA as a scientist (they are ALWAYS looking for scientists and engineers - AND psychologists!), or else in a totally different direction - a landscape architect, which is my 'off-work' love - yardwork, landscaping, plants, etc.


Bottom line, do what you love.

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I am a firm believer in doing what you love. We humans spend a majority of our time at a job or working, it is a fact of life. But that is no reason hou have to "settle" for something you don't get joy out of. I remember before my husband moved here to my state, he worked for a big supermarket chain in a distrobution center... and hated it. It was just a job to him, a means to an end... getting the bills paid. He HATED going to work. When he expalined this to me, I told him there is no reason to hate going to work every day. I love my job (although not the people I work for most of the time), and I look forward to going to work every day. I tried the whole corporate thing and realized I am not cut out for that type of world. I spent 5 years in retail, another 10 years in the video rental business as a manager (that I liked alot but got terribly burnt out after 10 years), now I am in a telephone / communications cabling business, and havve been for going on 12 years, and I still encounter something new every day and still enjoy coming to work in the morning.


Work is not a "one-size-fits-all" type of thing. I have a very close friend that has decided that music is her thing and has devoted all her time to pursuing her music career and picks up odd jobs here and there to actually pay the bills. Personally, I couldnt do that myself, but it works great for her.


Bottom line, I would take my happiness with my job over more money any day of the week.

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I got a Psych degree and a “good” government job, but it’s not very stimulating. I work in a small office all day long with minimal human interaction. I find it very lonely, and I really prefer working in a team environment. And the pay is average.

Do you have any idea how lucky you are to have a career, especially when you have a psych degree which is almost impossible to get a job in? If you don't like it, the best suggestion is to keep job hunting. But if you want a job in psychology field, then you need a Master's. This economy follows the "beggars can't be choosers" pattern right now since I know a best friend of mine, same degree as you are, would kill to have your job.


My job on the other hand deals with high school aged children who have been expelled from school for a number of reasons or are coming out of prison and alcohol/drug rehab. Nearly all of their lives are screwed up and they take their anger and frustrations on their teachers. I have been threatened, assaulted, harassed... you name it. However, I still stick around because I agreed to help the school and I love working with students who want to see a brighter day than being stuck in their rough home situation. I stick it out and deal with the challenges given everyday to prove that I can deal with it and develop into the professional world because I know how to handle the worst case scenarios. Seeing my students go back to their home schools is very rewarding because they were able to change their futures because of few teachers like me believing in them. However, it is a highly stressful job I don't see myself doing for a long period of time.


Not only do what you like, but do what is necessary. It's a tough world out there.

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Of course it's a huge misconception. Things won't just magically happen. You have to make it happen, by whatever way possible. If you want something, you have to go for it. Yes, being aimless will work for some people. I only had a couple of clues when entering university, but I've always had a goal at the back of my mind. I think people who don't have goals are often the people that are floored when they find out they're not where they envisioned themselves to be.


It's not too late to figure out where it is that you'd like to be in your 30's. You spoke with so much generalities, I'm not sure if it's because it's a public forum or it's because you're not sure yourself. Team work happens in almost every field. Once you have that figured out, do research and then just do it.

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Life is not fair or always happy. Dreams don't always come true. You can't be anything you want.


But that doesn't mean you should stop trying. Personally, no I don't like my career. I made a choice in college that I'm basically stuck with and I got tired of after a few years. I'm currently trying to change it and finding it almost impossible (the disaster of an economy we have doesn't help).


But you've got to stick at it and keep hoping or else you might as well be dead. Don't stop believing that you can find a rewarding career. But don't wait to find other things in life that make you happy either.

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