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Steve_A's avatar

How long should it take to make a decision?

Asked by Steve_A (5120points) February 24th, 2010

How long should I wait before I decide on a certain career/future for college and my life?

I was told by many counselors and teachers after high school, go straight into college. I did do some core classes, and then stopped and started working full-time since then.

After some time passed I went back and talked to a academic advisor and after we talked I decided to put if off a little more.She told me very specifically to be careful you do not go into something unsure and waste a lot of time,money and effort.

Now the year has come and is already passing….Yet I still truly have no clue what to do.And because of previous right knee injuries (ACL and meniscus damage) I stand a good chance of not getting into any military it seems.

I feel very pressured to do something but the more I try and figure it out the more I feel clueless and unsure.I do not particularly excel and/or not good at any subjects math,science or English.

What do you suggest in my situation?
Do I keep waiting and hope it just figures itself out?

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22 Answers

mrentropy's avatar

I thought you were going into a music school of some kind?

Lightlyseared's avatar

I was 30 and had a career before I decide what I wanted to do with my life.

Steve_A's avatar

@mrentropy No I decided that was not a sound move in economic times like this.

BoBo1946's avatar

Steve, most successful people were just like you. So, my advise, get the degree and see where it goes. The degree opens so many doors.

Got my degree and was a teacher and coach the first 11 years. But, spent the last 25 years in the insurance business.

You will find your way!

CMaz's avatar

As long as you like. You have your whole life to decide.

Don’t let “them” push you.

susanc's avatar

If you can afford to go to school, and can manage to have a little trust, I’d encourage you to start without completely knowing what’ll happen. Keep yourself open to things you may not have tried, or weren’t ready for the first time. Some will click for you, or lead you somewhere, but only if you go there and find them.
It might seem impractical to experiment in bad economic times. But you’re stuck anyway, so why not?

You already know there are certain kinds of work you won’t be physically able to do. That’s a beginning.

And take advantage of the cafeteria buzz – see what other people’s decision-making is looking like. You aren’t alone in this dilemma. Use the parallel thinking of your peers.

Cruiser's avatar

Steve, you could get a Liberal Arts degree which is a sheepskin none the less and will at least give you broad exposure and something to show when you apply for a job. Another tact would be to take skill base courses such as computer, or business communication where you could learn business oriented communicating skills which are very useful in the real world. Business skill based learning can help you in almost any real world job.

Work for a temp agency as they can put you in a variety of businesses where you can get an inside peek as to what other types of jobs are out there.

Or get a 2 year degree so you have at least something to put on a resume.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

You’re not alone @Steve_A . I’m 53, have four college degrees and still have no idea what I want to do when I grow up.

stump's avatar

I think Cruiser’s answer is really good. I would add that no decision you make has to be perminant. Most people now seem to have several jobs and even several careers in their life time. And it is okay to want to do more than one thing.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

I’m the somewhat older brother of @stranger_in_a_strange_land (and pissed off and bitter because Mom always liked him better). And without the education. Or the good looks.

phil196662's avatar

You don’t need to be confused and decide on something you might not like later. My advice is if you get an idea for a career go to the library and see if there is a book on that item.

Read it some and then look into an internship so you get immersed and see if you like it. If you do then take some classes at a junior college and go back the internship for more experience making sure you note everything as a resume.

Do this perhaps a few times until you get that wow feeling and then go back to junor college and then a finishing school.

Remember all the other stuff, that is the experience you can use if your ideal job has trouble like our current economy, just go back to a junior college and go enough so you can do that job…

Meanwhile the changes should be enjoyable as you immerse in different occupations!

evandad's avatar

Different times for different decisions. What to order at the diner can be done hastily. What to name your child should be a bit more lengthy.

phoebusg's avatar

Take some time to explore. The question is more on your methods of exploring. Some good advice up there. There is no real time limit, so long you can work and maintain yourself. You’ll run across something you really like. Eventually you want to find something that – doing it by itself is payment.

davidbetterman's avatar

I am older than 30, and I still don’t know what i want to be when I grow up…

Dan_DeColumna's avatar

Get the degree now. Once you have the degree, you can usually get your foot into the door of most careers. Obviously, there are exceptions. You aren’t going to become a doctor with a degree in Photography and you aren’t going to be an American Sign Language Interpreter with a degree in sociology. However, by and large, most careers are decided more on merit than certification. By the way, you say you are not good at English, but you seem to have a pretty good grasp on it to me.

thriftymaid's avatar

This question has no meaningful answer as asked.

Steve_A's avatar

Ok ,yes that does make sense and should have thought about it like that. I will pursue the degree least to get something under my belt.

I was just worried about getting into something and then looking back and saying “oh if only I would have waited or thought about it more”, Ya know?

tragiclikebowie's avatar

If you really want to do something, go to a community college for now and get a 2 year degree in Liberal Arts/Sciences. You can take a wide variety of classes and have them count. There also clubs, activities and possible learning abroad opportunities for you learn while you are there.

I have been through/am going through exactly what you are saying and I have wasted so much of my parents/grandparents money trying to just get through it. So only do this if you are sure. CC’s may have affiliations with some state or private schools for you to be automatically accepted after a certain amount of time with a certain GPA, a certain number of credits, etc.

Now’s the time to explore your options. But often times just having a degree can open doors, as others have said. And what you major in won’t necessarily be what you do. My dad was an economics major but now he is a IT/Networking guy and has been for a very long time.

Don’t just waste away, you will regret it later. Waiting and waiting and waiting won’t do you any good. If you’re ready, go ahead and take some classes and find what you like.

Steve_A's avatar

@thriftymaid If you feel this way, then flag it because that would mean it most likely does not meet fluther standards and from there you and fluther can tell me how to better ask and detail my question. That way I will get meaningful answers.

YARNLADY's avatar

@Steve_A if you need advice about a question, click on the contact button at the top of the page This question is an age old question and the answer is always the same – it depends on what you like and what your talent is. I took an employment agency assessment test, which placed me in my first account clerk job. It turns out I have a talent for accounting, and I loved it. I took accounting classes over a period of years, on my way to becoming a Chief Financial Officer of a corporation.

I got sidetracked by other, more favorable choices, and never reached the pinnacle of my quest, but that’s another story.

babaji's avatar

Seems like you haven’t hit your thing yet, Go for something totally new, something beyond where you think you are, so to speak, in other words, reach a bit for something that is out there, something that is new maybe.
When you see your reason for existing, you will know it, and you don’t have to rush for any decisions….,You know the saying, “When the time is right”

lilikoi's avatar

I finished my B.S. degree, worked for two years, and still don’t know what I want to do. Obviously the sooner you figure it out the better (life is short, indeed), but don’t rush the process. Have I recommended the book The Pathfinder to you yet? It has helped me set goals and stay focused.

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