Career Choice – An adolescent dilemma

You top in class, you play some sports, you play music, you read well, you are well-behaved, you are obedient, your rebellion is only what your parents have ordered: This is perhaps the almost perfect image that parents have about their children. Add to that a career as an engineer or a doctor, and you can create parental heaven.

Adolescents – human beings caught between the wedge of childhood and adulthood; they are just about stepping into the big world. Each of these individuals is growing at mother nature’s pace, which may be add odds with the education system created by humans.

The pressure from home, school and the society is overwhelming. DECIDE WHAT YOU WANT TO DO NOW. Woebetide any adolescent who confesses to not having any ambition. Constantly driven that they must work hard, they must strive for excellence life for any adolescent has become quite tough.

”How do I decide what I want to be? I have yet to experience life on my own, I am not even sure about the choices that I have. It is like I am being asked to tell now which movie is going to be my favorite in year 2012. I can’t tell now because I have yet to watch all those which are going to be made.”

Given this scenario, how does one take decisions related to your career? Aren’t adults around supposed to help? Well, the adults around are so anxious that they often need help themselves. I guess this is an additional burden that the adolescents have to carry.

The Career Map that is suggested is in 4 stages:

Know Who You Are – Find out the kind of person you are. Do you like to be with people or you are the kind of person who likes to be on your own. Do you like excitement or you like routine and a structure to your life. You prefer to be on the move all the time or you like to stay in a peaceful place. Of course, there is no test that will provide you instant answers.

This process may take a while. You can take responsibility for chores at home turn by turn – grocery, vegetable shopping, paying bills, organizing get-togethers, house-cleaning, maintenance, gardening, cooking – all these activities help you make up your mind. They are safe, cost effective and need only marginal investment of time.

Explore the World of Work – Before choosing an option, you need to know what is available. However, the job profiles are so many that it is impossible to explore all of them. To make it easier, look around and observe the lifestyles of the adults. Short-list those that you find interesting.

Match the Options to Your Personality – There are too many choices to make – whether it is the ice-cream flavors or the channels to watch, there is no dearth of variety. And at times it is the variety that makes it more complicated to choose. If you are an early riser, then options that require working late into the night may not suite you. If you are a people-person, you are going to be extremely unhappy if you have to work on your own.

Get into Career Action mode – Well, this step involves trying out your thoughts and feelings. During holidays or some free time, you can volunteer for many activities. You can join clubs in your locality, in school/college or in society like bird-watching, trekking, debating, music. During summers, you can volunteer to help companies during their campaigns.


When you try out different activities, you will get more exposure and actually meet adults who interact with you differently. You can also work on various skills like language skills, organization, problem-solving, communication skills. Along with the academics, these other skills are equally vital.
During this whole process, guys and gals, you need loads of patience to deal with the anxious adults, some boring stability so as not to go on a cross-country ride, nerves of steel to deal with both your and your parents’ anxieties. You can take heart from the fact that generations of adolescents have successfully dealt with this stage and so can you.

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