I always thought that if I wanted to live a comfortable life, I would have to make the most amount of money possible. But this, for some reason, often leads us to believe that we must completely disregard what we actually like doing.
Here is the story about why I chose to take the marketing-communications route in university:
I clearly remember one phrase from my childhood:
To put it simply, I loved to talk and I was good at it too. I liked talking to people, getting to know them, and learning about how they felt–for me, it all fell into perfect order. Little did I know, that this “chatterbox” trait would lead me to discover my talent in speech.
Whereas a lot of my peers would tremble at the mere mention of a “presentation,” I was always first to raise my hand. Of course, presenting made me anxious, but I used the shaky fits to fuel my emotionally-loaded, and intriguing presentation style. It’s just that feeling, watching so many faces morph into every emotion on the spectrum, that is absolutely invigorating for me, and I had finally found something I was passionate about doing.
Yet, I somehow started university thinking Marketing was my end-all, be-all.
“Why?” you might ask.
“Because it’s in the field of business, and because I can make the most money,
Stop and reflect.
Have you noticed that all we ever worry about is how much money we are going to make? This obsession has fooled us into completely disregarding happiness. We neglect it like it’s the most radical idea we’ve ever heard of–too impossible a feat to even consider.
“I’m sorry. No pay, no gain, honey.”
This is wrong for so many reasons. Mostly because you shouldn’t have to give up what you love in order to seek a life that you think you might love. We have no way of knowing how our future is going to turn out. Can’t you have both? Good pay and a job that you actually like?
So yeah, I came into Marketing for the money a business degree would likely get me.
But then I found Communications…something I actually liked.
Well, what was I going to do?
This past week, I attended a job fair specifically for Communications majors, and let me tell you: Best decision I ever made.
I realized that my confusion in deciding between both Marketing and Communications came from my lack of knowledge about both of those fields, and most importantly: I wasn’t doing anything about it. I knew I had to push myself and reach out to people who felt the same way I did and learn about their experiences too–even if that meant leaving my own social bubble. So, I went to a job fair provided by my membership with the SMU Public Relations Student Society. There, I would finally be able to get a feel for what I was dealing with.
While at the job fair, I spoke to a woman named Betsy Orton, the Chief-of-Development officer for preschool development. She provided me with the following piece of wisdom, “In my position in the Non-Profit sector, one of the really exciting things for us, because we generally have fewer staff, is that we wear a lot of hats. So that means we could be working on communications development, fundraising, marketing, volunteer management, community outreach, there is definitely a lot of variety in the field,” she said. Do you know what that taught me?
1.) The fields can criss-cross and overlap.
2.) There is no shame in doing both majors.
All in all, there is no shame in admitting that you don’t know what you want to do yet, because–despite how much you hear the contrary–we have so much time, and so many resources that give us the ability to experiment. Don’t limit yourself, and most importantly, your goals don’t have to be set in stone. We are all on our own path, however messy it may be, to leading a “successful” and happy life.
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