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Comments by YACCS
Thursday, June 29, 2006

A lack of faith

Sometimes you just gotta jump

I dropped out of psych graduate school and don't know what to do!

I majored in film and media, but thought it was too impractical.

By Cary Tennis

June 28, 2006 | Dear Cary,

I'm 26 years old and I recently left a doctorate program in clinical psychology abruptly after only one semester. I quit school for several reasons but primarily I was feeling burnt out (I had recently completed a two-year master's degree in the field), I no longer felt excited enough about the field to justify 10 hours of work per day, and I hated that I was going to be spending five to six years of my life in a part of the country (typically referred to as the "armpit") that I absolutely hated.

I moved to New York City and searched for jobs outside of psychology to no avail. I thought I could go into ad copywriting, perhaps to use my psychology training for evil instead of good. However, after two months spent without work, school, or any friends to speak of, I became desperate. I eventually had to swallow my pride and ask my father for help; so when he put me in touch with an old business friend who offered me a job, I jumped at the chance. Fast-forward three months and I am utterly miserable here. The job is not challenging, the office environment is lonely, and frankly, I feel diminished working in a position that doesn't technically require a college degree. The icing is that it pays so poorly I have to get financial help from my parents, which truly bothers me.

I am in an existential panic -- I have no idea what field or career I would like to pursue at this point and yet I want to be there already. I went to college for film and media studies but I have absolutely no faith in my ability to become any kind of writer. In fact, I entered into psychology because it appeared to be a safe and secure career path (as opposed to trying to make it as a creative). My girlfriend is trying to convince me to go to law school so that I will have more career options, but I can feel the same forces of practicality that sent me into psychology pulling me toward that decision. I'm not OK exploring lots of different careers at this point in my life; I feel like I had that opportunity and I used it on psychology. So I guess my question is: How do I even begin to figure out what to do with my life ... simple, right?

Ph.D. Dropout

This guy's problem isn't ability or skill, he could do anything. He just has no faith in himself. His head is saying be safe, and his heart says take a risk, be creative. Psychology, like the law, requires committment. You have to want to do it. Looking to the law for a safe job is a mistake.

God, this guy is 26, and single. Why not take a risk and see how it plays out. I'd like to know why he's so scared of trying to be creative. It's where his heart is. and I doubt he lacked writing skills when he completed a masters program. This is a lack of faith, his head wants security and his heart is saying take a risk.

posted by Steve @ 1:23:00 AM

1:23:00 AM

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