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Author Topic: I've lost all direction. . . where do I turn?
Maryha
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I used to know what I wanted. I graduated highschool and was on my way to college with a 4.0 under my belt and I was excited to start my English degree. However, the school I was enrolled at, combined with my personality, made me into a workaholic where I spent most all my time studying (reading 100+ pages a night) with very little time for friends or family. Every time I went to visit my folks, since I lived in the dorms, I would snap at them and take out my tension. While I would be immediate apologetic, I still feel bad about it to this day. At the dorms, while I had friends, I felt socially isolated because I never had time for anything else but school. Anyway, at the end of the year after what felt like my millionth break down I decided to transfer schools.
I spent this summer working in England. I went to escape my problems, but as I'm sure you all know you couldn't. I've put on more weight than I'd like to think about it and everyday I look myself in the mirror and think, "Dear God, is this me?"
Unfortunately, the school I've transferred to is not in my home town. I'm currently visiting a friend trying to find a place to live, which is proving difficult. But I'm realizing even should I find a place to live, I don't know that I'm heading in the right direction.
I thought I wanted to be an English major, but I don't want to be poor. I really want to study sexology. And I still want BOTH these things, but I'm not sure I can handle starting school right now. Part of me thinks I'll have a nervous break down, and I don't know what to do. Any advice?

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Bobolink
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You may need to take some time to consider your options. I know two young people (my son was one) who, after graduating high school, worked for a year before starting college. Sometimes I think people can burn out after 2 years of kindergarten, 12 years of junior, senior and high school and starting college. I assume you have valid credits from your first year. Have you considered taking a year off education and working? You can use that year to better focus on what you want to accomplish in college.

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Maryha
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Thanks for the response, but I actually think taking time off to work is one of the worst things I could do. I went away to work in England this summer and instead of taking some time out for myself I just ended up my usual workaholic self. And I can't get any full-time work that I would actually enjoy without my degree.
It's actually okay. Despite the fact that I panic a lot, I'm just going to go where I transferred and see what happens from there. Thanks for listening.

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illuminatedmind
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How much longer have you got? I'm getting school burnout myself, but I only have this one year left and then I'm off into the workworld.

At any rate, if you don't ahve much time left in school, maybe you can push through and then find a job you love so much, that maybe it won't matter as much if you're a workaholic.

If you're still covering basics, then do what you can to get the hours you need but stray from courses suited to your major. You sound like a rather structured person so if you set aside some time everyday to just think/relax/etc. maybe you can sort through what you want to do.


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Heather
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(As a former English major who works in sexuality, I feel it's worth mentioning that chances are good with EITHER of those two choices, you're likely not be be rolling in the bucks, by any stretch.)

I'd say "Do what you love, the money will follow," but since many times I've found it really doesn't (and often, that can be okay), I'll just say "Do what you love," instead.


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illuminatedmind
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I must say I'm with Scarlet. Do what you love. Sometimes value is better in a non-cash form. I myslef am going to be a teacher and there are no bucks there....
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Gumdrop Girl
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ever consider just reducing your courseload? i know i started out at 13 units a semester so i wouldn't fry. there's also the option of taking 5 years to complete the degree. i know more people who took an extra semester or two than ppl who finished in 4 years.

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Maryha
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Thanks for all the excellent advice. Really, I have NO desire whatsoever to roll in the money. I just don't think I could go for the starving artist lifestyle while I try to establish myself as a writer. Despite the fact that the literary and sexuality fields don't necessarily pay brilliantly, the only really important thing to me is that I have enough to cover the basics (food, shelter, etc.).
I'm probably not going to lighten my course load, but that's simply because the school I'm going to is much lighter academically, in general, than my previous school.
I think I'm just learning to cope with uncertainty. I can get freaked out if I don't know where I'm going or what I'm doing, so I'm trying to learn to deal without having a nervous breakdown.
I think my new school will be good too in that I will have time to do a lot of the things I love to do, which I didn't last year. Hopefully, I'll get more balance in my life.

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illuminatedmind
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Sounds like you have a plan outlined. If you can afford it, you could always double major, but don't overload yourself. I actually have a friend who is the woman of many majors. I can't remember if she dropped any or added or what. But she's laid back about it. A little too laid back really.

At least you have the drive. That's more than what most people have. You just need to learn how to direct it at things other than work and school.... Or maybe you have already. Anyhoo, best of luck to you.


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