Let’s talk about something that doesn’t get discussed enough: school. Now, school is an important part of life. We all probably should go to school up until we’re 18. We learn the building blocks that we’ll need in life. We may not need trigonometry, but you better know what 2+2 is by the time you’re 10. Obviously, this school is the standard, but let’s discuss higher education: college. Now, this is controversial. However, let me say congrats to the recent college grads, even though this wasn’t the most ideal situation to graduate in. This is not an easy feat. As a matter of fact, according to one of my capstone speaker, around 30% of people graduate with their bachelor’s degree. That is not an easy feat.
With that being said, there is a big question about college: do kids really want to go? Or do they go because it is being forced on them? It is a difficult question to ask. Of course, there are cases of both. There are people that want to go in order to further their education and want to continue after that (grad school, med school, etc.) However, there are just as many who want to go just because they feel like they should. Because that is what is expected of them from their parents, their peers, their school, and many more. College can be fantastic (maybe not the best 4 years of your life, but hopefully, you will enjoy them more than you don’t), but what if your passion does not fall in line with a major?
Imagine this: you want to be a big YouTuber. You idolize a lot of YouTubers, and you get started early, at like 15. By 18, you have 900,000 subscribers, are getting big sponsorships, and have some of the best content on YouTube. You start facing an issue: you feel like you should go to college and major in biology because everyone expected you to be a renowned doctor when you get older. You are faced with a choice: do what you love and what you’ve been doing all this time, the thing that you have made a career out of, the thing that you put all your hard work in, or you sacrifice that, go to college, do what is expected of you, only possibly enjoy those 4 years, and become a biologist. When put that way, it is pretty easy which choice to make, right? Well, people choose option #2 more than you’d think.
The whole point of this is the fact that your passion is important. It doesn’t matter what that passion is, if you are passionate about it, it is worth exploring. We are often bogged down by the expectations of society. Some people know what they want to be and they might not need college for that. Our issue stems from the fact that we feel like we need to fall into the status quo of society, and we want to have a “competitive edge” over others. First of all, no one knows that you’re competing with them (see this article for a further explanation of that:http://musiqtherapymag.com/ugly-competition/), secondly, this is only hurting yourself. Why would you stop something that you love doing because it is out of the norm. Would you stop eating your favorite food because it is unpopular? No, you’d say, “Hey, more for me!”
Now, this is not a post about how colleges are evil corporations that only want your money. Like I said, you’ll hopefully enjoy those 4 years or longer (no shame in that) than you don’t enjoy them. You can also discover your passion there. High school isn’t the place where you usually find what you want to do forever. Going to college, you might take an elective that you are passionate about, and you might find that you want to choose that as a career path instead. You might be scared because you don’t know if it will take off, or where it will take you. And that is ok. Here is the question you need to ask yourself: does your passion outweigh your insecurities? To use the example used earlier, does your passion for YouTube outweigh your insecurity of challenging the norm? If that answer is yes, then please go for it. If the answer is maybe, go for it. If the answer is no, then remember this: You only have one life given to you. Why would you want to live it doing something that you feel like you “have” to do? Don’t live your life through the lens of other people, and don’t worry about the reception you will get. If it makes you happy, that’s all that matters. Peace, y’all!