*Seriously, maybe, I’m still undecided.
I read a blog post recently that actually made me say, “Yes!” out loud. I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want to be when I grow up, by which I mean I’ve been pondering what my purpose is. How can I use my particular talents, skills, and abilities to be a force for good?
Of course, my purpose right now is to love and care for my small humans with a ton of energy and effort. That will continue to be my purpose until I no longer walk the earth, but there’s more. I believe I have a purpose that is my own, not connected to my children. I’m looking for the thing that I can do to have a positive impact in the world beyond my little family microcosm.
I’ve been searching for that thing for a long time. One avenue of that searching has led me to advanced degrees and more education. Certainly, the logic follows, if I know more, if I take more classes and obtain more degrees, I’ll be qualified to do my part to make the world better. And so I have been pondering what are the credentials I need? What are the skills I must obtain? What school certificate or additional letters to my name will give me the credibility with my audience and the world? In typical fashion, this was putting the cart a bit before the horse, quite a bit.
I met with a career advisor/life coach to see if it would be wise for us to work together for a little while so I could find out what I should be doing with my life. She asked me, “What do you want to do?” and “Who is doing it?” and, finally, “How did they get there?”
The answers to these questions are; help people in areas I’m passionate about (family, parenting, social justice) through my writing, many people are using their writing to help people (Gretchen Rubin, Brene Brown, Janet Landsbury, and so many more), and the answer the last question is: it depends, but you definitely don’t always need an advanced degree. Surely, some of the people who’s work I admire is based on original research and they have PhD and other letters after their name, but its’ not always a requirement.
To think we must accomplish a certain degree of worldly success before we can be a meaningful source for good is to miss out on the opportunities right in front of us each day. – Joshua Becker
I think the information and lessons learned in pursuit of extra letters and degrees are often valuable, but I also think the career advisor was encouraging me to consider whether it was necessary. She was sort of asking, “Aren’t you enough already?”
I guess I don’t realy know. I mean, I know what Brene Brown (seriously, I’d join her cult, I”m obsessed with her ideas) would say. She would say, “OF COURSE.” in terms of am I enough as a human. I guess in terms of the purpose thing, though, I have work to do to figure it out. So, I’m going to write and read and explore and pay attention.
Because, as the blog post points out and the career advisor encouraged me to discover, I don’t know that we need to have the most degrees or the highest standing in order to do good. Doing good comes in forms big and small.