Saturday, July 16, 2016

Thoughts: Why Not?


This fall, I'm going to be a junior in high school. Not gonna lie, that's a really scary thought. Like, a really scary thought. Suddenly, I'm having to try to come up with answers to all kinds of intimidating questions. When are you taking the SAT? What college do you want to go to? What do you want to major in?

What are you going to do with your life? 

It freaks me out quite a bit. Deciding my life? Figuring out how I'm going to possibly support myself in the future? It's terrifying! I don't feel ready for that. I can't even drive yet! I barely finished geometry! How am I supposed to decide my entire life?

Plus, I'm a super practical person. Generally, that's a good thing, but when it comes to trying to make life decisions..it hasn't been working in my favor. Whenever I'm attempting to think of something that I might actually be interested in, I convince myself that it's not "practical" enough, that I couldn't possibly support myself doing it, etc.

But I'm starting to realize..every time that I look at something I'd be interested in, and then go, "Oh, I could never do that"...why not? Why couldn't I do that?

For example: I really like taking photos. Photography fascinates me, and I love trying to get good shots, particularly of people. But as a career? I'd never even considered it. It didn't feel practical enough. In my mind, I always thought, "Well, I might not have steady enough work, I'm not good with tech-related things, operating a camera on any setting beyond automatic makes me super confused, blah blah blah." But there are lots of areas in which a photographer would be needed, and I could take classes and get better at operating a camera. I'm not saying that I want to drop everything and go be a photographer, but I shouldn't just toss it out as an option because I don't think it could work. It could.

Another example. A lot of y'all probably know that I really want to be a novelist. But there's always a part of me that says...you guessed it. "That's not practical enough." And honestly? Being a novelist isn't the most practical thing on the planet. I get it. But if you have a backup plan, or are doing something else at the same time? Why not? Why shouldn't I try to become a novelist?

Not that I'm saying you should go drop all plans for college to go get famous in New York, or forget all plans that you've ever made to become a world traveler. You need a backup plan, because you never know what's going to happen. But in my opinion, as long as you have a good backup plan, it's not a bad thing to pursue something that might be a bit crazier, something that will make you happy.

I guess what I'm saying is, don't throw yourself in a box, the way that I've been doing. Don't look at the future with your only options being something along the lines of nurse, teacher, engineer, dull office job, etc. There are more options out there. Don't limit yourself. Don't throw yourself in a box that's going to make you miserable. Chase what you want to do, and have a solid backup plan if it doesn't work out. Because hey- why not?

28 comments:

  1. Heck yeah, Grace Anne go be a novelist. I've wanted to be one since I was six years old and my older brother explained to me what it was. And be a photographer too while you're at it.

    My hope is to have a book published before college, but that's a pretty tight deadline, especially considering the fact that I might be axing my current novel…which I'm mad at myself for because that sounds super flakey. Ugh. But anyway, once I go to college I want to *maybe* major in psychology, or at least take lots of classes in it. If that doesn't work out, I'll probably do some business classes so I can better market my books. And I'll definitely take a creative writing class, but I'm not going to major in it because the biggest piece of picking a college major advice I've gotten is to "find your people" within your major. I'll be the first to admit that I'm an introvert, but usually the creative writing major crowd is a little bit more on the antisocial spectrum. Not necessarily my people.

    Anyway. One thing to keep in mind (this has helped me a lot with anxiety for the future…I have way too much) is that when you're a little kid, you have all these stereotypical jobs in mind like astronaut or ballerina or a chef. And when you get older, they get more specific, like a technician for NASA or a dance teacher or working with a restaurant until you build up enough money to start your own. But when you listen to adults telling you what their job is, it's a long title like "sales associate for *insert any fancy term*" or whatever. And it just makes me realize that there are so, so many jobs out there for a person, ones you didn't even know existed when you were six and everyone wanted to know what you wanted to be when you grew up.

    When I was little, I was going to be an author, and dang I was going to be famous. I was going to make more money than JK Rowling. I had a big ego and unrealistic ideas. But even though my absolute dream would be to write full-time and be successful with it, I've realized that I could become a therapist (I'm actually considering it) because I love psychology. Or a secretary for some company because I love organizing things and answering phone calls and writing things down. I could even become a sushi chef (despite the fact that I'm white) if that's where life took me (and I would LOVE that if I was good enough). I might even be a stay-at-home mom. So basically, there's so many options for everyone. And even though it's scary to think about, the whole "what do you want to be when you grow up" question has so many options and so many great things to go along with it.

    Sorry for this being so long. I really loved this post. It was really inspiring for me.

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    1. Thanks, Abby. I've wanted to be a novelist forever- I'm definitely going to try.

      Oh my goodness, you're axing it? That's so hard. I'm sure it's not as bad as you think it is. I could definitely see you as a psychology major! I'm not sure that I'd want to major in creative writing either. I thought about minoring in it, but I really don't know.

      It's seriously so crazy to think about that. Like, when I was younger I really thought there were only fifteen or twenty jobs out there, period. But now I'm realizing that there's an infinite number of possibilities, which is really strange to think about! It's so cool though.

      I love all of your options. Obviously I think you'd make a fantastic author, because I love your writing. But I also think you would make an amazing therapist. And I mean, secretary, sushi chef, stay-at-home mom - there are so many amazing options. Whatever you end up doing, I know you're going to be fabulous. :)

      I'm SO glad that you enjoyed it <3

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    2. I actually decided I'm going to finish it and stop being so whiney about having a bunch of writing to do. I made a lot of progress on it yesterday and I've made a deal with myself to not go on tumblr or Pinterest at all until I've written a substantial amount that day.

      I know! I thought that I had to be a writer or else I'd be stuck working in the fire department or something like that (because really, didn't everyone want to be a fireman when we were five?)

      Ah thank you! Right now I'm throwing myself into the writing part by finishing Dragons (title of my book, but it's not fantasy and isn't about real dragons. It's actually about the effects of cults on family members/friends of the person involved in it, but through past tense) and working on getting it published! That's actually pretty exciting for me because I think that this one (with lots of editing. I've started taking notes on things to change) has a better chance of getting a good agent than Too Good To Last, mainly because when I started TGTL I didn't realize how much the beginning would contrast with the end feel-wise. At the beginning the whole thing is too young and petty-sounding and by the end it's super dark and the switch between the two was just way too sudden and poorly explained.

      *connects to a post* *writes comment longer than the post itself*

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    3. Good for you!! Tumblr and Pinterest are basically the worst distractions ever. As is Twitter. And Blogger. And Instagram. And basically I'm just the most distractible human ever and should be banned from the Internet. Anyways, I'm super excited for you!! I'll be your first buyer when you're published;)

      SO DID I. I was so terrified that if I didn't think of something else I'd either end up as a teacher or a nurse. XD

      Whoa, that's so exciting! Oh my goodness. I really hope that you can get an agent and get published!! I'm legit so excited for you right now.

      Haha! I love your long comments so much!

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  2. YES. YES YES YES YESSS.

    This post speaks to me so much. I'm probably not going to college and going the traditional route. I want to be an author. Maybe work a side job or two. Keep things interesting. I don't have a lot of interest in going to school for four years and paying lots of money? Because I don't know what I would go for? Sigh, life is confusing. But I totally love this post because I can relate. xD

    // katie grace
    a writer's faith

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    1. I'm not super excited about going to college either, although I think that's probably what I'll end up doing. But I know you're going to be amazing at whatever you do, Katie, and I'm so thrilled that you liked the post <3

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  3. UM YEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSS I'm always telling myself that "it's not practical". When people ask me what I want to do I never know what to say xP.

    I want to do something creative with my life. That's all I know so far, but I think I'm headed in a good direction :)

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    1. YAY YOU GET ME!

      I think that you definitely are:)

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  4. That's awesom!!!!! My plan right now is to maybe get into screenwriting (which is like the same as being an author lol you don't make money till you sell the script) but I think it would be a fun route to take. I'll probably end up going to college for it if I can to learn more in depth and get experience

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    1. Ooh, I've always thought that screenwriting sounds fascinating! Scripts are so much fun. I think you'll make an amazing screenwriter!!

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  5. This is such a true and wonderfully direct post. I so agree. Chase your passion.

    -T.
    x

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  6. YES!! That whole "it's not practical enough" thing is what haunts and dictates my future. Like, I know I will never have the courage to pursue writing or art or literature because I just feel as if I'm not good enough, and success depends a lot on luck in those areas. But I reckon pursuing it is something that is daring and may pay off in the end. And if you have a back up plan, why not?

    -M
    The Life of Little Me

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    1. I'm so glad you understand, M! I'm trying to become a more daring person, so perhaps this will be a part of it? I guess we'll see!

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  7. thanks man i've been learning this too. like, writing isn't "practical" but it's what i want to do. so idek.

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    1. same same same. I'm glad you get me <3

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  8. wow yeah i feel this. sometimes i think about the future and it's quite overwhelming. i definitely want to pursue photography/videography as something...even if it's a hobby, but i can see myself doing it as a business too. but like you said, it might not be practical enough. and also writing is what i will do. i've been chasing it since i was five so i'm going to keep that going but still people are like "what's your real job going to be?"
    UMMM.
    haha but God has a great plan for everybody's life so i'm just going to live every moment and hope for what He has planned and trust. this post is super super relatable, grace anne <3

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    1. XD Don't you love people like that? Ugh they kill me.

      You're going to be amazing at whatever you do, Autumn. <3 I'm so glad that you could relate:)

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  9. My life right now! But I am graduated and still don't have any idea what so ever about the career I want to pursue (dont let this discourage you) You'll find something when the time is right! And hey, who said you have to stick to only one job?

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    1. I know that you'll figure something out!! And you're totally right! Why not do multiple things?

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  10. Oh man I remember going through this so so so often!! It's so overwhelming and scary when i think that the decisions i make now contribute to my future, but I think God does lead and direct us to the places He wants us to be in. And that's a very lovely reminder.

    Chase your dreams and don't be afraid to seize opportunities and live life to the best you can <3<3

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    1. He definitely does. So I'm trusting in that right now. Thank you so much for this lovely comment, Elisabeth:) <3

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  11. guuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuurl. I'm gonna be a senior k??

    NO THNK YOU IM NOT READY OKAY OKAY OKAY *flails* *runs away screaming*

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  12. YES! That's the right mindset. I remember when I was deciding on my college and I was thinking about what is practical and what not. I've chosen teaching of languages and it's not the brightest option because teachers get a lot of shit in our country (I don't really know about the rest of the world) but it's a decent backup plan. I am really lucky because I like teaching as well. But you shouldn't just look at the practical part, college should be fun because hey, you're going to be stuck with the decision for a long time. Haha no pressure. I totally agree with you on the fact that people shouldn't throw away ideas just because they are a little bit crazier. I, too, want to be novelist. English is not my mother tongue, I don't live in english speaking country, my writing pace is really slow and I hear comments from my friends that I won't be able to publish anything in english. Then I ask them Why not and it seems that all of their arguments just disappear.
    Choosing college can be stressful and crazy because I'm 23 and I still don't have life figured out but once you do your research and look up all the schools it will get easier. So good luck! :)

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    1. I'm sure that you'll make an amazing teacher, Simona!! I think that you would be a great novelist as well. Don't let anyone get you down- you could totally do it. <3 :)

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  13. THIISSSS IS GREATTT! I love this. I'm slowly learning that I need to pursue ALL my dreams instead of just one! Never stop writing love! -jr xx

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    1. YAYY I'm so happy!!! <3<3 Thank you so much for your sweet comment, Jacy:)

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