Surviving vs. Thriving

I’m ashamed to look and see how long it has been since I last wrote a post on here. I do have quite a few posts to write about so I will probably spread them out over the week. For my first post…

Recently, my dad’s friend from Chicago (let’s call him Reader) came to visit with his daughter who is two years younger than me. He is a very intellectual guy who has loved to learn since he was a child back in India. He’d pick up any and every book just to expand his knowledge – and boy, did he really expand my mind when he came and stayed for a few days.

One night we were all chilling by the kitchen counter and he gave me a speech about how I should choose to go into my future and nothing has ever struck me as much as what he said that night.

As many people say or have heard from others, you should follow your interests and do what you enjoy. That was the message Reader gave me essentially but worded this way:

You need to find something you’re obsessed with. Something that interests you so much, and something you are so passionate about, that you will wake up in the mornings and chances are that THAT is what you will think about. It should be that way. Anyone can do any job in the future, humans are capable of adapting to their environments.

But if you choose something you obsess over, you will excel no matter where you go. You will be promoted sooner than later, you will get a higher salary raise if that’s what you care about, and people from other fields will come to consult you because you are one of the best in your field. But most importantly, you will have fun.

You can be really talented in one field, but if you don’t obsess over it or have fun with it, then in the end you will be surviving, like everyone else, when really you should be thriving and making a difference in the world – regardless of the field you are passionate about.

“Don’t just survive. That’s what we immigrant parents all over the world have done and are doing right now for you kids. All these immigrant parents have left the comfort of their home countries and are merely surviving right now. Don’t be like us, that’s not why we brought you here. Be better than us, make a difference.”

His speech hit me hard. I’ve always heard people say follow your interests, but it what how Reader put it that made me rethink my entire future. I had plans to go through the English field and become an editor of some sorts, because I enjoy going through the editing process and also that is one of my skills. But.. I don’t obsess over it. I don’t wake up in the mornings wondering what literature I’m going to read next (as much as I’m trying to read more nowadays) nor do I pick up and read any of the books on writing/grammar that I have received as gifts from family.

The one thing I obsess over is paleontology. I love it with all my heart and have since I was a little kid. Paleontology is the subject where I willingly go and WANT to buy books on and read on the train. Every time I go to a bookstore, I always search for a paleontology section. Currently I am reading a book on the Tyrannosaur family that I found at a thrift book store and I am learning so much.

Reader’s speech didn’t just affect me though, it seems like my mom was also enlightened by it. To my surprise, my mom, who had once strongly suggested neurology as a career path, is now encouraging me to follow paleontology. First, I should finish my English degree and get a masters, but afterward – go get that paleontology degree and maybe become a professor.

To be honest, I have yet to look at schools that have good paleontology courses and am still feeling slightly lost despite knowing what I want to do. But I have a good feeling about it.

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Doubts in Major

For the past two weeks I’ve been thinking of changing my major from Psychology to English. Or, at least major in English and minor in Psychology.

It just suddenly hit me that if I have a love in writing, then why am I not majoring in it? Granted, an English major might not have the greatest reputation, but if I have a passion for writing then heck, why not? I certainly have more talent in English than Psychology, and if I naturally am better in English than Psychology (where I would don’t have natural knowledge in and would have to take a lot more classes for), then again… heck, why not?

I know majoring in English would be tougher for me once I graduate (as so many people in the world claim), but I think I would much rather major in something I love than in something I don’t love as much but doing it for the hopes of a better successful career.

Then again, I’m still unsure. I shall see for the next week or so on what to do. Hopefully I will make up my mind before I have to sign up for second semester classes. Do you guys have any suggestions or thoughts on these majors?

My Dog as a Person?

You know, sometimes I wonder just what kind of person my dog would be if he was a person.

He’s currently 3 years and 2 months old, so let’s say roughly 22 or 23 years old in human years. Therefore, I’m going to label him as a junior in college. Also, I’m going to ignore his attitude around people and focus on his attitude around dogs, so don’t take my description of him as a human to be all there is to him. And I’ll use my family (myself as well) as his if he was a human. I guess technically he would be my lil (older?) bro even if he is a dog :)

As a person… hmm… he would be the nice guy. The nice, cute guy girls take as a bestie instead of a macho, hot man haha. I think he would be the kind of college person who loves meeting new people, but also enjoys his alone time in his dorm room with his computer or music. Half introvert? He would probably be intimidated by the jocks/manly athletes too.

Perhaps he would be a bit of a clown as well and annoy some people now and then. He’d have a short temper too in an ironic kind of way.

At home with family, he’s a spoiled son of a bitch. His parents would be those rich people that shower their kid with affection. He’ll go to his mom for attention and pampering, and his dad when he wants to play football or something. He’ll go to his sister when he’s bored too. After all his favorite family member is his sister (hehe ;) ). He’s probably arrogant too (dunno if he would be the same at college or not) and does whatever he wants without caring what his parents or sister say. And as typical, he sleeps a lot. Anytime anywhere. Literally.

That’s all I can really think about. Do you guys ever wonder what your pet would be like in real life if he/she was a human? It’s fun to think about.

College Essays

I came home for the weekend and yesterday  I went for a nice outing with an old friend. It was nice reconnecting with her and catching up with each other’s lives. We ate so much Indian food, I was bloated to a point where it hurt to laugh. Ridiculous yet worth it.

I got back home around 10:30 or so and my mom made no hesitation in jumping into college essays. I only got time to take my shoes off. We worked on two essays and gosh maybe some of you know this and maybe you don’t, but never work on college stuff with your parents. Only show them drafts when needed. Don’t write together. I almost died of frustration.

Mom kept telling me not to do this, that sounds childish, this sounds weird, why are you writing backwards (I don’t even know what she means by that but I didn’t argue), etc. Now, I have just recently developed into someone who talks back to her parents (late bloomer?) but I still don’t yell or anything. And still, there are moments where I restrain myself in front of my mom. Because.. she can be a raging bull when she’s mad. Seriously though. It’s a bit scary when she’s mad. And during stressful times like these, no way am I taking chances.

I actually literally felt frustration bubbling inside me. I had to clench my fists several times whenever she made a comment on what or how I was writing. She also has this thing where she’ll sigh and it sounds like a sigh of frustration/disappointment. It gets on my nerves so damn much. I kept looking at her whenever she did that. Which was like every 10 minutes.

Two hours later, I’m dead beat and I could feel my eyelids drooping. My legs were cramping up from sitting so long, and my butt was starting to ache too. She finally let me off the hook (yeesh) and I pretty much collapsed on my bed in exhaustion. But lo and behold. I can’t fall asleep. Took me about three hours to do so.

Now, today I thought I’d relax before going back to school. Plopped down on the couch, played some music from my laptop and drew. Just about an hour ago my mom called from work telling me I should work on two essays before I leave. Like hell I’m going to.

I would show a picture of my drawing, but my dad thinks it’s not so pleasant (It really isn’t that bad… but I’ll just not show it.) I’m an artsy person so normally I’m either writing or drawing accompanied by music. Love it.

So anyway, hopefully my mom will let me disregard essays for a while so I can focus on school work. I think she would want me to come back next weekend to work again… But I hope not.

Future Plans

I went to visit two colleges today. As a senior, I never really realized how quickly this painful college process is going to go by. I mean, in less than two and a half months, I’ll be done with the application. A year from now, I’ll be (hopefully) enjoying my college life and I’ll have new friends and everything.

It’s kind of scary thinking of the future. I’m so used to going to school for pretty much my whole life. I wonder what I’m going to do after I graduate? What’s going to happen to me after that? How am I going to make a living? How different is work going to be from school? Gosh, all these things are stuff worth wondering (in my opinion). I’m interested in biopsychology, but I hope I’ll get somewhere in life with that. Not going to lie, I think that’s gonna be a somewhat tough road for me. But I’m sure I’ll pull through if I set my heart on it, right?

I’ve been putting more effort in my school work, as you guys probably know. I’ve been staying up all night trying to perfect my assignments. Thinking like that, I’m pretty confident I have a good path ahead of me. I’m just sitting around now. Waiting for my roommate to come back so we can go to the library to do work. Although, I have a feeling it’s not going to be very productive.

I should probably get a head start on work so I won’t have to worry about it and unnecessarily stay up late again.