Our family gathered together last night to celebrate the holiday. The conversation shifted from topic to topic – American politics, the weather, kids – and then settled on my nephew and his high school education thus far. He’s in grade 10 and just starting to think about what he wants to be when he grows up. He still has no idea, but he did make a comment that struck me: “I don’t want to grow up and wish I had become something else.”
Part of me was struck by his innocence. He’s young and energetic and excited about the possibilities that lie ahead of him. I can only hope that he finds exactly what he wants to do and never regrets that decision. But I also found myself reflecting on my own career and what I have done in the twenty years since I was in grade 10.
The conversation naturally transitioned to the adults around the table talking about what they would be if they could go back and have a career do-over. My husband, a journalist, would be a lawyer. I, a communications advisor, would do something in nutrition and fitness. My dad, an inventory specialist, would have gone into the trades. And my mom, a sales rep, would be a teacher. This made me wonder, should we be forcing kids to choose a career path at such an early age? And if not, what is the alternative? I don’t know the answer to this, but I do know that the majority of the people around the table said they would choose a new career if they could.
So, consider this: If you could go back in time, would you stick with your current career or would you choose a career do-over?