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Thread: How realistic is it to shoot for your dream job?

  1. #11


    There are some professions that if you don't have a passion for it, you are not going to do it particularly well.

    With that said, once you get good, passion can wane, and you can float into a 9-5 job that pays well and gives you plenty of family time and time for hobbies. That route was open to me, but I chose instead to seek something else I might be passionate about. I don't see anything wrong with either decision.

    In addition, I think searching for "the perfect job" is not going to be that good either. Master something you enjoy and believe has a purpose and you can use that to move in different directions using what you've learned. My research adviser recently told me he believed I could do anything with my background because I've already mastered something. (not in those exact words)

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  2. #12


    when i was in my early 20s i went to a career counselor because i was having trouble figuring out what career to pursue. the one thing i always remembered that the counselor said was to pick something that you are really good at and also have a real passion for. i think that is good advice. personally, i'd rather go for the dream job over the practical job any day of the week. of course this may mean you won't make oodles of money but personally i'll take being happy & fulfilled over lots of money. i doubt anyone really regrets not pursuing the drab, practical job. people frequently do regret not pursuing their dreams. and, you can always do the practical job if giving your all to your dream job doesn't work out.

    i'd suggest making good use of the career counselors at your college to learn more about what jobs you'd be best suited for within your field. career counseling centers can be a wonderful resource. since you want to work in journalism one of the best things i'd think you could do is to start a blog if you haven't already. it's a lot of fun and i think it will help you refine your interests and make contacts.

    full disclosure: i'm not very practical so take what i say with a big ole grain of practical salt.

  3. #13


    Not to be all Nike, but just do it if that's what you want to do. You'll never know until you try. Sometimes we need to take risks which may exceed all supposed rational thinking and planning if we want to accomplish anything worthwhile in this short, impermanent lifespan we are cursed with.

  4. #14
    mod love baby... Array Lady_X's Avatar
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    figure out some solid what if plans but go for it.
    do something every single day to help you get a step closer.

    the way i look at it seriously is that you spend more time at work (usually) then anything else. so it's as much your life as anything else rather or not you admit that to yourself. so make it all good. be happy and excited to start your day. be obsessed with it. feel passionate every day.

    and then go home and be in love with the people you spend the rest of your time with.
    There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.
    -Jim Morrison

  5. #15
    darkened dreams Array labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Generally it's doable with a lot more work than expected and less pay that hoped for.
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  6. #16
    Blind Guardian Array Haven's Avatar
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    Everyone says follow your dreams, but it's hard to know exactly what that entails, especially if you don't have anyone's footsteps to follow, and even if you did there's no guarantee that what worked for someone else then will work for you now. I picked my major because I thought it was something I could do and I thought it would allow me to work anywhere in the civillized world. I majored in computer science and it worked out pretty much how I expected. It's not my passion exactly, but I didn't really have one at the time, at least not one that makes money. Some people love fishing, but they don't get jobs as fishermen. I mean that's a really hazardous job, one weekend a month is enough fishing for most.

    If cultural art journalism is really your dream, there's nothing stopping you from doing it right now. Go somewhere, and write about their culture and art and shit and publish it. I don't know if student debt will be a problem for you, but you don't need to fork out all that money to do something you could do as an amateur. Are you into it enough that you'd want to spend all of your time on it, and stake your livelihood on your capacity to produce quality material?

    {The Diplomat}

  7. #17


    Realistic. Hah. The discussion of realistic goals has often been a hazy, ill-defined one as far as I can tell.

    Do you mean a job that easy to get? Well, depending on what part of the world you live in, you have far more factors than just a given degree to worry about.
    Do you mean a job that is in high demand, so that even if it's not easy to get there are lot of positions available?
    Do you mean a job that nobody likes, but at least it pays well enough to keep you fed, clothed, sheltered and in good health?
    Do you mean a job that you can network your way into? Because who you know proves to be so frustratingly much more important than what you know. (Yes, I'm bitter)

    What exactly is realistic here? To me, I had been led to believe that a realistic job is a combination of the second and third points. It's got to be in high demand so that I can fall into a position somewhere even with factors working against me, and pay well enough to sustain my human existence. Not much place in there for whether I like it or not, eh?

    And it looks like that's what you're really asking. Are 'Realistic' and 'Enjoyable' mutually exclusive? Depending on what it is you like and here in society you fall, they need not be. So is Arts and Journalism your passion? Is it something that occupies a strong place in your self-image? Because there's work that can be found with practice in the arts- real work. So it may not going to fulfill that first point. Or that second. Does that mean that it's now not realistic?

    Is it just something that you prefer to engineering (I'm sorry that you were being pushed. That sort of thing rarely has the motivating effect parents seem to think it will), and it's a matter of "Better A than B?" Because that's a bit unfortunate, too.

    Let me back up a little. I am not saying that just because you're passionate about something, there is always a way to make it marketable, and by extension, profitable. I am quite unimpressed with that "Follow your dreams! Always!" rhetoric myself because I don't have dreams like that. But for you, it could work with some level of effort that can only be determined by you. There is something to be said for seeing work as less an obligation and more a vocation. If you can identify with your work, it's probably easier to hone that work you enjoy and turn it into something that can sustain you.

    I'm in the same boat as you, to be perfectly honest. I feel like I'm being forced to consider how hard it is to do anything where I live every time I think about how I'll sustain myself. I got lucky in that the stuff that interests me is currently very marketable, but how long is *that* going to last, you know?

    Anyway, I hope this helps a bit.

  8. #18
    i love Array skylights's Avatar
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    My dream job is to be a doctor. After a long time of not pursuing that, I've decided that there's not really anything else I can imagine preferring doing with my time, besides not working - and I know from my brief stint of unemployment after college that not working gets boring really, really quickly. So I got an allied healthcare job, started taking the prerequisite science classes, and will start volunteering soon. To me it doesn't feel unrealistic, because every time I get bored at my part-time jobs, I daydream about what I would rather being doing. Yeah it will be long and difficult, but would I rather be doing anything else? Nope...

  9. #19
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    'Realistic' is what people use to justfy why they are doing something other than what they really want to do. You are welcome to tread the same path if you wish.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freesia View Post
    We're often told as children to shoot for our dreams and not to let anything hold us back, but as soon as we hit secondary education we're told to choose careers that are profitable and can sustain us in the long run.

    Right now I'm majoring in Arts and Culture Journalism (after a lifetime of being pushed to do engineering by my dad), and I'm aware that there probably won't be many job opportunities in my field, and the ones I do receive most likely won't be the best paying. I've been wondering whether or not I should pick up another major in something more "practical" or if I should mainly focus my energy into what I'm doing now.

    What has been your experience in this area?
    Well, I spent a year trying out a biology course. I found the massive amounts of rote learning, mere memorization and regurgitation, uninspiring and very stressful, and I was under a lot of pressure from my parents.

    I've always been musical and wanted to do something with that, so now, I'm studying composition and music history and hopefully conducting next year. I don't expect to make millions but I'm optimistic about job prospects.

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