Do you absolutely have to directly use your degree for it to be worth it? Not at all.
I showed some serious school spirit this weekend. I attended an alumni event for a few hours where I drank free coffee and met a few interesting people. I didn’t get much out of it to be honest. But hey, at least I could say that I went. That counts for something, right?
“Are you working in your field?”
That’s what my new friend Ryan asked me. I told him that I wasn’t. It turns out that he also wasn’t working in his field. Ryan is very ambitious and is working on all sorts of exciting projects. I for some reason get really excited when I meet someone that’s not afraid to try something new.
We all say that life is short, yet we never do anything about it.
The worst conversation to have in your 20s as a student/graduate is when someone asks you about your degree and your plans. When I wrote about branding recently, I mentioned the importance of never feeling sorry for yourself. It seems like most recent grads just want to complain about something.
Unless you have the rest of your life figured out, you likely don’t feel like answering this question or explaining yourself to someone. I hate explaining myself because I don’t feel like I have to. It’s my life. My choices.
Before, I go any further, I want to make it clear that I graduated from college debt free. I didn’t cost anybody anything or steal from anyone. I worked for it. What I do with it is my choice.
Why am I not currently using my degree?
You don’t have to do anything. It’s your life. A degree doesn’t guarantee you a job nor does it force you to work a specific job.
The main reason that I’m not using my degree or working in a specific job is simply: freedom.
When I wrote about unique ways I save money, I wasn’t afraid of hurting some feelings. Through finding unique ways to save money and increasing my income, I’m proud to say that I’ve been working towards total freedom by 30.
Now I realize that I could have a much easier life if I got a job. All I would have to do is go to work, show up, get my duties done, and come home. That’s a lot easier than going through launches, chasing people for money, and relying on freelancing clients. You never know what’s going to happen next.
I just love the freedom too much.
That’s the short answer of it all. I want freedom and options.
“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.” –Nelson Mandela
Will I use my degree in the future?
Likely. Anything can happen next. I can get sick of writing and just look for a job.
Truth be told, I’ve been thinking about this lately. Some days, I just feel like finding a job where I don’t have to stress about anything. Who knows what the future holds.
Why get a degree then?
It never hurts to have a backup plan. Anything can happen. Why not prepare for it? With a degree, you increase your odds of finding work or at least get your foot in the door.
It was also the best move to make in my youth. I was pretty clueless at 17 and didn’t know what else to do. It sure beat hanging out at coffee shops.
Many folks bash college, but I’m proud to have a degree. I was the first person in my family to get one. My parents were very proud and I set an example for my younger brothers. I also showed everyone that you can go to college and not be a broke joke when you’re done with it.
I suggest that we all focus on the importance of fighting the right battles. Life’s too short to be pissed off about work 24/7. Don’t feel bad if you’re not using your degree. Don’t worry if you never attended college. Make the best of your current situation!
[In case you missed it, you need to check out my webinar! It’s all about accomplishing actionable goals in your 20s.]
What do you think about using a degree? Should you directly look for work in your field?