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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Mahodanany Offline
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Exclamation How long? - May 31st 2017, 01:57 AM

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I don't know where to post, except here. I'm 13 right now, and in August ill be 14. I'm going into 8th grade, and something that I noticed about myself freaked me out. All year, kids have been asking me, "What are you going to be when you grow up?" And all I could say was, "I don't know.". I realized it only about a day ago. So, my real question here is, how long do I have left to decide? And how do I decide? It's plagued my mind how to know what I want to do. I tried taking online tests, asking my family how they decided, etc. And, so far, nothing. So, what do i need to do here, and how long do I have left to do it?
  (#2 (permalink)) Old
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Re: How long? - May 31st 2017, 02:29 AM

Hello there, I'm sorry you're starting to become worried about what you want to do when you get out of school. A lot of people who enter college often go in as an undecided major so don't feel like you're going to run out of time! Though it is ideal to have some kind of idea of what you want to do, it's not going to render your chances of furthering your education to enter in to whatever your profession ends up being. I did not finally decided on what I wanted to do until junior year almost the beginning of senior year. My best friend's sister has been in college for 10 years because she thought she wanted to start a tattoo business so she started as a business major but now she's a history major. Our interests often change over time (at least mine did for sure).
One way you can start looking in to careers is by taking career quizzes. When I was in 8th grade, my class took a career quiz so you might end up doing something similar. They should be preparing you to think of different kinds of professions. If they don't, I would suggest talking with a guidance counselor or an assistant principle, they should be open to helping you get those ideas flowing! Don't be too worried abut it now; they'll definitely get you to start thinking when high school starts and more towards the end like in your junior and senior year (maybe even in your sophomore year!).
Just know that time won't run out for awhile, and don't even look at it as time running out. Eventually you'll decide what you want to do! Just focus on your grades and your performance so you get all the opportunities you can get! Message me any time if you have questions.

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  (#3 (permalink)) Old
Celyn Offline
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Re: How long? - May 31st 2017, 10:28 AM

Hey there (and welcome to TeenHelp!)

Technically, there is no 'time limit' for figuring out what you want to do with your life. Many young people your age and even slightly older, still don't really know what they want to do work wise yet, and that's completely fine. Even if you don't know what you want to do, it's best to choose subjects in school that you are interested in and that you enjoy, rather than picking things that you think you should take or because friends are taking it etc. It's also helpful to think of the skills that you currently have and how they could help you with choosing what you'd like to do after school, whether that's go to college, or get a job and what kind of job your skills can match with.

It's good that you've asked friends and family about how they decided. Is there anyone at school, like a careers advisor, that you could talk to?

Remember that a job isn't for life either. Many people change their ideas of what they want to do during school (I did and so did my friends) and others start off in one career and then may change their careers later on in life.

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  (#4 (permalink)) Old
Everglow. Offline
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Re: How long? - June 1st 2017, 10:22 PM


As said above, there's no limit on when you have to decide what you want to do, and you shouldn't feel like you have to rush your decision either. When I was 13/14, I really truly thought I wanted to be an actress. Considering my social anxiety has been really bad for most of my life, God only knows why I thought that was realistic. When I was 16, I wanted to be an archeologist or a historian. Honestly, I took a course in History and was convinced I wanted to dedicate my life to digging up old things. Now, I'm 22, and I want to be a counsellor. I think. But every now and then I learn of something new in psychology and thing "wow I could totally do this for a job"...and then a week later I'm thinking definitely not.

The point here is that, you don't need to know what you want to do. Even when you're 20, 25, 30..you don't have to know what career you want. You can job surf and see what takes your fancy if you like, or, you may come across something you love so much that you can't put it down. There's nothing wrong with thinking about it now, and I'd encourage you to do so. Look into different avenues - what subjects do you enjoy most? Do you like sport? Is there something you've wanted to learn but haven't yet? You can broaden your skill sets and see what comes to you, but you don't have to make a decision unless you're ready to.

When I was in school and I asked people what they wanted to be, I know they answered, but for the life of me, I don't know what they said! Chances are, none of them, or very few, are doing exactly what they dreamed. So don't worry about it. You're not falling behind, you're doing just fine.

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The things you donít need to liveó
books, art, cinema, wine, and so onó
are the things you need to live

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Re: How long? - June 2nd 2017, 06:52 AM

Welcome to TH

You have more time than you think to figure things out. That's why people on average change careers 7 times. I don't remember where I heard that, but by no means do you have to have your career figured out at 13. Think about the things that you're interested in or activities you're drawn to and go from there. I think too much pressure is placed on kids way too young to have their entire lives figured out. You or your life circumstances could change or you could try something you think you'd love and end up hating it, or try something on a whim and fall in love with it. You never know. Don't put too much pressure on yourself, you have plenty of time.

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Re: How long? - June 3rd 2017, 05:06 PM

Hey, welcome to the site! Like others have said, there is no time limit to figure out what you want to do in life and what major to study in university. Taking online quizzes and asking around can only do so much, but only you know what you want to do. Don't worry when you'll find out, I honestly feel like there's too much pressure on youth these days by older people. You have to do this by this age, you have to know that by a certain age. Just enjoy the life you have now and who knows, somewhere along the way you might come across what will eventually become your dreams.

If you need to reach out to us for support and advice again, don't hesitate.
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Re: How long? - June 3rd 2017, 07:18 PM

Oh gosh Mahodanany, the answer to that question is, 'your entire lifespan'. If you don't have a set idea (or any idea at all) of what you want to do professionally, then please don't worry. Many of us don't know what we want to be, early on, and that's fine.

Many people learn more than one profession during their lives, these days. We're living longer and healthy enough to work for longer, training courses in all sorts of things are widely available, job security is lower than it used to be... all sorts of factors have changed things in the last few decades. So to think of your career as being made up of one profession for your whole life is outdated. As a late teen, I trained and almost qualified as a dog groomer :P But I've no intention of being one now.

More recently, I fumbled my way through life until the age of 28 and then decided I wanted to train as a therapist. And that's turning out fine.

As a result, I'm doing reasonably well financially. While I would probably be richer if I'd decided on a profession early on, I doubt I'd be happy in the kind of profession I'd have chosen in my late teens.

So please don't worry. If you're not sure what you want to do, then that's fine. If you feel pushed to train in something (or if you feel for yourself that you must), then by all means pick something. But don't feel locked in, and don't be afraid of the possibility that you might completely change direction afterwards and want to do something completely different.
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Re: How long? - June 4th 2017, 08:03 AM

Here are a few links to a couple articles which will help you better understand what career direction you would like to go.

It depends on your personality type. I don't know which of the 4 basic personality types you have, but you can figure it out pretty easily by simply seeing which one of the four answers best resonates with you.

for jobs, see:

If you plan to go to college, here are some tips:

Now not everyone is made to go to college. College isn't the path for everyone. Some people skip college and have a wonderful life going on their own path. They know they don't want to go to college and they are just fine with it.

In general, rather than figuring out what you want to do, what path you want to take, you could instead, figure out which of the 4 personality types you have, and read about your personality type, and that would tell you a whole lot about yourself, and you would probably learn a lot about yourself, things that you always knew about yourself but never put into words before. Then you'll have a much better understanding of who you are, where you fit in the world, what direction you want to go, and these questions won't perplex you so much anymore.

(I can guess alreay that you probably have the "J" personality type. There are 4 letters in the personality type. The last of the 4 letters is either a "J" or a "P". The "J" type people like to have things settled and decided. The "P" type people are much more comfortable having things up in the air. They can leave things unsettled and put off deciding them until later. If you were a "P" type person you wouldn't mind being 13 and not knowing what you're going to do when you're 18. However, a "J" type person might be unsettled by that, and would prefer to have their life more planned out. Therefore, I'd guess you have the "SJ" Guardian personality type, since 50% of the population does, so I'm just going by probability here, and that one has a "J" in it. So look up the description of "Guardian" at (http://www.keirsey.com/4temps/guardian_overview.asp and see if you identify with it. I'll also give you a hint: I'm usually wrong 50% of the time! My guesses are no better than flipping a coin! Only you can say which personality you identify with. Don't let some questionaire tell you who you are. Just read the descriptions and find the one that you identify with.)

(When I found the description of myself, I was so amazed, it felt like the author had been stalking me my whole life! He knew more about me than I knew myself! I was so amazed! How could there be this description of me here in this book, written by someone who had never met me? Yet here it was! It was errie!)

[And if none of that works, then be a plumber. That's what Einstein said he would have been if he had to choose again.]

Best wishes!

(P.S. Don't be a plumber.)
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