It is a topic that different generations will have varying opinions on and many of those opinions I have experienced first-hand.
I completed a Bachelor of Health Science in Clinical Myotherapy in 2011 and before 6 months in the work force I knew in my gut that there was no-way I would be in this clinic based setting for the rest of my working life. It was a feeling that didn’t sit well with me. I had just recently completed 4 years of University, racked up a hefty student loan debt and been rapidly introduced into the professional world of insurance companies and different registration organisations.
I was left with a decision to stay in the Health Science industry or take some time out and re-evaluate. I ended up quitting 3 jobs and going over to America on a work travel holiday. This gave me time away from my life as I knew it. What I realised was I could apply the knowledge I had learnt from University a lot in everyday life from treating acute and chronic injuries to taping and injury management and prevention.
There was a decision still to be made when I got home. Do I go back into a job where I know I will spend a lot of my time watching the clock tick by? Or do I do something else in the meantime until I work it out. The decision in the end was a little bit of both, I was treating people out of my home to make some extra money, sports coaching casual shifts during the week and stacking shelves from 11pm-7am usually from Friday-Monday. Surprisingly I actually enjoyed the shelf stacking. I walked in knew exactly what was expected of me, got it done and then was on my way with the rest of the day in front of me to enjoy. But there was always that feeling of unfulfillment and to be honest I don’t think that feeling will ever go away until I am running my own business successfully.
Taking some time away was the best thing I could have done. Out of no-where opportunities started opening up to me and before I knew it I was in the race to win a national wide competition marketing Acer computers. I was one of 5 finalist chosen to take part in the 5 week marketing campaign at www.acerteamunlimited.com.au and ultimately went on to win that competition. It was there and then my love for marketing and networking was born. I was good at it and could get a message across to a large audience in a quick space of time. I knew after that I had made the right decision not going back to what I had studied.
But the journey didn’t end there. I am still working out what parts of the marketing world I want to specialise in and the fact that I don’t have a degree in marketing means I have to be at the fore-front of the marketing game and new trends if I want to stand out. It almost forces you to work for results because those results become your new resume.
It may seem like it was an easy decision for me but it wasn’t and many people can’t force themselves to make a decision they know is in their best interests. There is often the job security, financial factors and other motivators to keep them in a job they studied for.
Here are 6 reasons not to be afraid of ditching your degree
1. You Were 18!
Think about that, the time most people make a decision on what they want to do for the rest of their lives they are usually in the final year of High School which would put them at 18 years old. I don’t know about you but I wasn’t making the most educated decisions at 18 years old. I look back now and I see the reasons behind me making the decisions I made and I don’t regret any of them. But you need to know when it is time to change course and head in the direction your heart is telling you to.
2. Is A Degree Worth Your Happiness?
If you are not happy in the job you are working, then is working in a job that requires that degree really worth it? For me, all things weighed up it wasn’t worth it. I value being happy and enjoying the time I have over anything else.
3. Don’t See It As Wasted Time
Never will I look back on those 4 years I spent at University as a waste of time. Sure some of the classes may have been a complete waste of time but as a whole the experiences was life changing. I learned a lot of good habits and some of my best friends today I met at University. Those memories and good times I would never substitute.
4. But You’ll Be Letting Down Your Family, Right?
Wrong, these types of decisions need to be made by you for you. It is your life. Don’t live the life anyone else wants you to live. Live the life that makes you happy. Not everyone is going to be happy with every choice you have ever made but if that choice sits right with you then that’s all that matters. There is no point staying in a job that makes someone else proud of you only to realise 10 years later you wasted all that time and hated every moment of it.
5. But I Spent So Much Money!
No kidding! University is not cheap, and it is an expensive lesson to learn at the end of your degree that your heart lies in another profession. At the end of the day it is just money and again it comes back to you being happy. Use it as a motivating factor to work hard to get where you want to be.
6. If Everything Else Fails…
If everything else fails then you will always have your degree to fall back on. This for me is motivation enough to work my ass off to not let it get to that stage.
I want to hear other people’s experiences about how they moved away from their degree. I would be really interested to hear someone that completed a medical degree before realising it wasn’t for them.