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I have no idea what I want to be when I "grow up"

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frigidfire86 posted 6/3/2013 15:46 PM

Seriously, how did ya'll choose a career? I've been in school for five years, taken all kinds of classes, got a degree in something I don't like...still no idea. I joined the Army and it wasn't really for me. My H is getting tired of my inability to decide. He wants me to just get a job so we can have more money (we really don't need more and there isn't much hiring here anyway...I currently volunteer with the Red Cross and at the library). The only thing I ever really knew I wanted to be was a mom, which I am. I've considered being a nurse, teacher, writer, museum curator, interpreter, accountant, lawyer, and a multitude of other things. I just can't figure out what the right direction is for me. Honestly, if I could get paid to be a professional student and just take classes that interest me for the rest of my life, I would in a heartbeat. Ugh. Just frustrated right now. We're stationed in Germany and I desperately want to go back to school, but online only classes can be limiting...that and a nagging H.

Newlease posted 6/3/2013 16:29 PM

I'm 52 and I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up. Actually, I'm really looking forward to retirement and charity work.

I didn't have the luxury of taking classes and trying to figure it out. I had to work to survive. And mostly I've had good work experiences. I have been promoted several times with various job duties, so I couldn't say I've actually had a "career." But I've always had challenging work and have been able to pay my bills.

Maybe you should just jump in and try something. If it doesn't work, try something else. It sounds like you might be able to do that.


KVille posted 6/3/2013 16:40 PM

I feel you. I just lost my job after 27 years with the same company. My story sounds just like NL
I do not have a higher education but have always earned a decent wage.
I now have the chance to do something I love but I have no idea what it will be. Wish someone would tell me.

GabyBaby posted 6/3/2013 16:41 PM

I'm 41 and in my second career - and I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up.

After leaving the military (first career - medical field), I finished my degree in Accounting. Why accounting? I knew it would pay reasonably well and I'd be able to support myself and my kids. I went back a year later and did the MBA program.
If I had to do it all over again, I'd like to say tha tI would go into Psychiatry since the way people interact fascinates me, but I also know that it doesnt always pay as well as one would hope.

For me, I do what I need to (career/job) in order to survive, and do what I want after work and on weekends (hobbies).

nowiknow23 posted 6/3/2013 17:22 PM

I'm doing NOTHING related to my schooling. I studied Finance, but now I'm working in business continuity. NO common ground there.

If you truly can get by on his salary, can you take some time to volunteer in different areas to try them on for size?

Amazonia posted 6/3/2013 17:37 PM

What about working in academia? You could be a research assistant. That's getting paid to learn.

sisoon posted 6/3/2013 17:48 PM

Is What Color Is Your Parachute still around? That mainly talks about networking, IMO, but it also talks about turning what you enjoy doing into a career. It might help.

kernel posted 6/3/2013 18:57 PM

Sometimes it's not what you're doing, but who you are working for. Find a company that is in line with your values and beliefs and see if you can get a job with them, using the skills you already have. That may give you the fulfillment you are looking for. Making a lot of money doesn't ensure happiness - I'm sure there are a lot of well-to-do people on this board, after all.

Sad in AZ posted 6/3/2013 20:21 PM

Sounds like you have a more fundamental problem than which career you should choose.

You don't want to work outside the home, yet you want to keep spending money to study. Even if you are well off, it sounds selfish to me.

If your family truly doesn't need your income, you need to sit down with your H and see why he feels the way he does, then plead your case. If you will be coming back to the states after Germany, perhaps you can put off your continuing education until you settle in a place that offers free or low cost adult education courses.

There is also a website where you can take classes for free (I can't remember the name; hopefully someone else does); you don't get any credit for them, but if you want boundless knowledge, perhaps that's the way to go.

ETA: The free college course website is

[This message edited by Sad in AZ at 8:22 PM, June 3rd (Monday)]

kernel posted 6/3/2013 21:05 PM

Perhaps it will help if you just think about what you want to do next, what your next step will be, instead of thinking about it as a lifetime career. People change careers all the time so maybe if you stop thinking about it as a lifetime commitment, it will help you make a decision. It's only a decision about what to do right now, not a forever decision. The career counselor at the college where I work gives this advice to students all the time - it seems to help take the pressure off. It worked for my DD.

IRN2006 posted 6/3/2013 22:18 PM

Do they have temp agencies in Germany?

You might want to start there.

My day job has nothing to do with what I went to school for.

I'm not interested in a career. Now, I do have a fairly demanding job, but it's got limited potential. But,that's ok with me because the perks include a fabulous work/life balance.

That's not to say I don't do a good job. I absolutely do the best job I can and do try to improve myself and the job. I just have no desire to push myself to get promotions, etc.

I don't define myself by how I obtain money. I define myself by the relationships I have with people.

karmahappens posted 6/3/2013 22:31 PM

Do you think your husband is hoping you will start contributing financially? Do you have a college fund for your daughter all set up? Is your retirement money over-flowing?

Maybe he feels over-whelmed with being the only person to bring in money?

Maybe that's what he means...and not so much this?

My H is getting tired of my inability to decide


Want2help posted 6/3/2013 22:47 PM

You don't want to work outside the home, yet you want to keep spending money to study. Even if you are well off, it sounds selfish to me.

I don't think it's selfish at all.

I'm a current student looking forward to a Ph.D. I've only chosen a career field because I have to (out of necessity). If I could, I would just be a mom and student for life. I'd have an epidemiology degree, an English degree, and a biology degree and a...

Amazonia posted 6/4/2013 13:54 PM

You don't want to work outside the home, yet you want to keep spending money to study. Even if you are well off, it sounds selfish to me.

I don't think it's selfish at all.

I tend toward Sad's perspective here - it's fine to keep studying, but to ask someone else to fund it (even your spouse) when they don't want to or can't afford to... not exactly selfless.

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