It's Okay If You Don't Know What To Do with the Rest of Your Life

Photo Credit: xeromatic / CC0 1.0 
Lately, I've talked with many friends who are going through a "what should I do with my life" existential crisis. I saw the anxiety in them as they talked to me about getting older, and not knowing what they should be doing with the rest of their life.

As we grow up, we're socialized in our society to think that the perfect progression of life is to go to school, get a job, buy a house, and have a family (in that particular order). We're taught that we're to start our career as soon as we finish school, and that's what we do to occupy our time until retirement.

While in school, before we "start our careers," we're asked to think about and decide about what we want to do when we grow up. We're conditioned to think that we need to pick that "one thing" that we're going to do with the rest of our lives.

I like to think of it this way: the whole idea of knowing the one thing you're going to do with the rest of your life is a fallacy. That belief is an unrealistic expectation and sets up people for a lot of heartache. Personally, I believe that we should be able to decide what we want to do with our lives, and change our minds however we see fit.

Life is fluid and unpredictable. It works out in so many ways that's hard for us to predict with 100% accuracy. Out of all the people I know in the world, I only know one person who knew what she wanted to do with her career young, went to school for it, and has her amazing career. Even her life has had a few curve balls; she wasn't able to plan or foresee everything.

Everyone else I know has had a non-linear career path. Even I changed my career path, twice. We bounced from position to position for different reasons. Some people changed jobs, and some changed entire career paths.

The ones who switched careers decided to make a change for the better. They either wanted a change because ether wanted to be in a career path that gave them more satisfaction, or the pay better supports the lifestyle they want to have. At some point in their lives, they changed their minds about their career, and that's perfectly fine.

Life is too short to be in a career that doesn't give you satisfaction. It's okay to change your mind about your career path; it's your life. As you get older, you become more experienced, mature, and your perspective on life may change, especially your career.

Roderick Conwi is a professional development coach and writes at Nourishment Notes about lifestyle development. He is also the author of The Procrastinator's Quick Guide To Getting It Done. To get powerful insights that enhance your day, join his free newsletter.

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