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Indecision needn't halt progress

On February 20, 2018

 

BY EMILY JONES / VARSITY NEWS COLUMNIST

When I started this fateful, laborious journey (a.k.a. going to college), I was full of motivation and hope.

I was ready to tackle everything thrown at me, and I worked tirelessly the first two years.

Back then, I thought I knew exactly what I wanted.

Since age 16, I had dreamed of being a forensic psychologist.

“Quid pro quo, Clarice” – that sort of thing.

Alas, I do not want that kind of career because of the extreme stress that comes with it.

Regrettably, this took me almost three years to realize.

I was just too idealistic about my personality traits.

As anyone who has been around me much knows, I would not have lasted two seconds dealing with the criminal population.

Or maybe I would have, but it would drain most of my energy.

And, beyond that, what would forensic psychology do to my mental health?

So, now, I’m a bit stuck because I don’t know what to do, which drives me insane.

But it also finally puts me in the same position as a lot of other college students.

I like to think I’m a good person (mostly) but that doesn’t mean I’ve always been my best self.

A couple years ago, I looked down on other students who didn’t have a plan.

I thought they either were too lax about life or simply had not found anything they could be passionate about.

How wrong I was.

Losing my passion for the career I had idealized – after sacrificing so much time and effort in the process – gave my ego a big hit.

It gave it such a big hit that I lost motivation for a while and had trouble caring about school.

Anyone who knows me personally would probably be surprised to read that, but it’s true.

I still have days when I just don’t want to go to classes four times a week for hours at a time to study things I could care less about.

But I do it anyway because I know that’s what I must do. 

The thing that is most important (even when you don’t have a plan) is to work hard.

Never stop making progress.

Progress doesn’t even have to be reading three chapters a day and studying until 1 a.m.

Progress is anything that takes you farther than where you are.

The most valuable advice I’ve seen pertaining to this topic was online, of all places.

It was just a simple comic, but that doesn’t matter.

What matters is the message: “No more zero days.”

Don’t have the motivation to sit down and write an entire paper?

Just do one page.

Does your room look like a tornado ran through it?

Set your timer for ten minutes and get done what you can.

Just keep doing little things that move you toward your goals every day.

Before you know it, you’ll be making progress, and some progress is much better than none.

Maybe along the way you’ll find something you want to do, too.

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