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skfinkel's avatar

Do what you want to do--don't be afraid.

GD_Kimble's avatar

seek true happines, and hopefully, in the process make the world a better place.

mirza's avatar

discover the answer to this question
and you'll know when you find it. You cant just expect someone to answer this for you. Dont Settle. Do what you love.

PS if this question is work related, heres a wonderful quote from steve jobs:
You've got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don't settle.

ideabrian's avatar

Use what you like as a compass. In any situation ask: "Do I like this? Do I want this?" If it's not a Yes! then keep looking. People love those who are authentic and do exactly what they want. The reason: You'll likely be great at something you love.

mdy's avatar

A professor once told me -- "Go where you are most needed, because that's where you'll be most happy."

Everyone needs to have some purpose in life; it would be a real shame if we did not create and make use of opportunities to make a positive difference in this world.

hossman's avatar

As long as noone else is dependent upon your support, do what you love, no matter how little it pays, or how little respect it has among your peers, etc.

If you have a family or others are dependent upon you for support, I suggest you find a job you can like that maximizes your ability to meet your support obligations. Having kids, etc., may frustrate your ability to pursue your dreams as a job, but then find a way you can pursue that as a part-time endeavor.

As an example, I started as an actor, director and writer. When I decided to start having a family, I became a lawyer. I have now discovered although I love the law, the practical experience and emotional burdens of being a family lawyer are not worth the compensation, and although I loved being able to help people in difficult times, I have become increasingly "burned out," my attitude is not what it could be, and my family has suffered from my long work hours. I went back to school and I am now teaching. All along, I have continued to act, direct and write as a hobby.

From a practical standpoint, it is not always possible to have that "dream" job, but it is important to find some way to still do something with that dream. Not everyone can make a living painting, but that doesn't mean you can't be a realtor and still find time to paint.

particleman's avatar

While you are figuring out what you want to do with your life (career-wise, I presume) the best thing you can do is travel. I would say traveling is one of the best investments you can make in your life - different cultures, lifestyles, philosophies. As the famous quote goes (roughly - I'm quoting from memory) - "The world is is like a book and he who has not traveled has read but a single page". Who knows? You may find your answer "out there."

zina's avatar

i love some of the answers here - and completely agree with the sentiment not to SETTLE. although not always practical ($$) in a given moment, it's a state of mind that can keep you in a space of ever-bettering your situation. i also agree that it's good to do something that changes the world for the better --- and this encompasses a very, very wide range of types of work/activities/hobbies/etc. and yes, travel can give you some serious perspective and a wider sense of possible ways to spend a life.

in terms of figuring out what YOU should do.... here are some ways of looking at it that might get you thinking about yourself in new ways. what do you do in the 'in-between' times (after work/school, on your day off, stolen moments)? (try writing a list - writing emails, eating, stretches, calling friends, .... oh yeah, and i love reading the news! even when i'm running late!) what things do you do that you enjoy so much you could do it all day long? (it could be random - looking at cookbooks or photography books, petting a cat, eating chocolate, watching movies, clothes shopping, disco dancing) what are you always super excited about? (the circus, live jazz bands, karate, Thanksgiving, planting herbs, the ocean, making out, dreaming up new gadgets, meeting new people, being alone and reading all day)

hopefully you can tell i'm thinking of random things. maybe some of this will spark your imagination. it may be weird to sit down think of these at once, but maybe if you pay attention to it over time you'll notice something.

susanc's avatar

Go learn something complex while you're figuring out the philosophical part of your question. it's wonderful to have skills that will make you valuable to other people, something that will help us all. that's what makes you secure. but you can always learn more. knowing something deeply helps us to learn the next thing. looks like you began a long time ago - lots of interests.
and remember what skfinkel said: don't be afraid! it's better to be an utter fool.

Vincentt's avatar

Carpe diem?

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