HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST COLLEGE MAJOR AND CAREER

Choosing a major in college can be nerve racking and even intimidating for high school seniors. I would argue that this can even be more challenging for non traditional students. Non traditional students have to make this decision while keeping multiple other mitigating factors in life such as; a spouse or significant other, children, aging parents or even debt. At the end of the day the decision process should be the same. I would like to start by dispelling some myths about college and schooling in general.

YOU DON’T GO TO SCHOOL TO LEARN

I wrote an article about this not too long ago which you can read here. In general, school does not exist to really educate you and turn you into a well rounded individual, you will have to do that on your own with the help of your parents and a few mentors. So start by forgetting this common myth because if you do not, you will be disappoint and this will in turn make you less likely to thrive in college.

YOU DON’T GO TO COLLEGE TO FIND YOURSELF

Okay, I am so sick of people saying they are going to college to find themselves. YOU are NOT missing! My personal theory is people who are so hellbent on finding themselves especially under the age of 25 are just afraid to go out and start living life. Just speaking from a logical perspective, you are less likely to find yourself 1000 miles away from where you grew with no family and friends around. I do however think that having a college experience away from family and friends is a good way to know yourself better. It is important that you get the experience of living life outside of the safety of your parent’s home that way you learn to trust your own decisions and develop your own instincts. At the very least living on your own will teach you a thing or two about budgeting and time management.

THE DECISION

Now let us focus on how to make the decision of choosing a major. A lot of these rules may seem counter intuitive but I am guiding you to make a decision that your 40 year old self will not regret. I will give you 3 simple rules on picking a college major so here goes:

DON’T PICK WHAT YOU LIKE

Okay I know that this may be counter intuitive and may even contradict everything that you have heard up to this point. But one thing I know is, your likes will change and so will you. Picking what you like usually leads to cul-de-sacs of regret and next thing you know you will be working in a field that you vowed never to consider and your 40 year old self will be begging to get a job that you sneered at in your 20’s. Well if you can’t pick what you like, what should you pick then?

PICK WHAT THE MARKET LIKES

This is the most underrated piece of advice ever. Not only is it the best piece of advice when it comes to making a decision regarding job prospects it is the most logical one as well. For starters, your 40 year old self will thank you for making this decision. I made a decision to change my major from Mathematics to Nursing and I have never regretted that decision. While Math was way cooler and easier, Nursing was a booming field and had a stronger job market. I knew nothing about Nursing and when I left home (Cameroon, Africa) at 18, Nursing was not even a major it was just a vocation. My sister Roseline literally badgered me into considering Nursing as a major and once I did my research I was sold. I finished college in Dec 21st, 2006 and within a week I found a job working as an ICU/Stepdown unit nurse that offered me a $10,000 sign on bonus. I was working 3 days a week and I had 4 days left to do the things that I enjoyed. Or as some would say, I had that time to “find myself” as some would like to say. My advice is, it is easier to “find yourself” on a full belly. My friends who had counseled me to not switch from Mathematics to Nursing were jobless for a few months and eventually found jobs teaching middle school Mathematics.

YOU ARE NOT WHAT YOU DO

There is this pervasive way of thinking in western culture which likes to permeate the idea that you are what you do. I for one do not agree with that way of thinking. I don’t believe that your job defines you. I have had all kinds of jobs. My first job was been a Popeyes cashier and that was a big deal! I eventually became a Certified Nurses’s Assistant (CNA), next I became a Registered Nurse (RN) and eventually I went back to school and became a medical doctor (MD). I am now completing my training as a Radiologist. However, none of those jobs defined me. There are a few roles that define me in life; wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, mentor etc. My advice to you is to not be so fixated on the job description.

YOUR PASSIONS CANNOT BE STIFLED BY YOUR PROFESSION

The full sentence really is; Your passions cannot be stifled by your profession but you will go broke if you only follow your passions. Nothing delays your dreams more than being hungry and broke. One of my greatest passions in life is to be a mentor. I love working with young and not so young people who are rethinking their career and life choices. I also love Math, I never got a chance to finish my Math major in college (I completed about 2/3rd of the core curriculum and graduated with Nursing). However, I have found a way to incorporate Math in every aspect of my life. I combined my passions and created my company CNATOMD (get it? from a CNA to an MD) which is really my passion in life. I have mentored young people for over 10 years on a volunteer basis (I recently began charging a small fee due to constraints on time). I assist them with life strategy skills and provide guidance with decision making when it comes to career and education choices. Simply put, I believe in finding the shortest, cheapest and fastest way to living out your passions while building a healthy financial portfolio. I believe in strategic goals and although it may seem like your career may not intersect with your passion for a few years they will eventually collide in an explosive manner. All you need is strategy!

How to MAXIMIZE the POWER OF CONCENTRATION in your life

How to MAXIMIZE the POWER OF CONCENTRATION in your life

power of concentration

The power of concentration when harnessed becomes one of the most powerful tools for success and increased productivity. Concentration however is a skill that is totally antithetic to today’s pop culture. Let’s admit it our inner man-child or woman-child craves to be entertained. Being entertained is fun and refreshing but it also kills productivity like nothing else if  you overindulge.

While…

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The Case for Black Doctors

GRACE, FAVOR & FAITH

By Damon Tweedy. Originally published in the New York Times Sunday Review on May 15th 2015
CreditAnthony Gerace

DURHAM, N.C. — IN virtually every field of medicine, black patients as a group fare the worst. This was one of my first and most painful lessons as a medical student nearly 20 years ago.

The statistics that made my stomach cramp back then are largely the same today: The infant mortality rate in the black population is twice that of whites. Black men are seven times more likely than white men to receive a diagnosis of H.I.V. and more than twice as likely to die of prostate cancer. Black women have nearly double the obesity rate of white women and are 40 percent more likely to die from breast cancer. Black people experience much higher rates of hypertension, diabetes and stroke. The list goes on and on.

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13 Things You Should Give Up If You Want To Be Successful

Originally posted on Medium by Zdravko Cvijetic

”Somebody once told me the definition of hell:

“On your last day on earth, the person you became will meet the person you could have become.” — Anonymous


Sometimes, to become successful and get closer to the person we can become, we don’t need to add more things — we need to give up on some of them.

There are certain things that are universal, which will make you successful if you give up on them, even though each one of us could have a different definition of success.

You can give up on some of them today, while it might take a bit longer to give up on others.


1. Give Up On The Unhealthy Lifestyle

“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” — Jim Rohn

If you want to achieve anything in life, everything starts here. First you have to take care of your health, and there are only two things you need to keep in mind:

1. Healthy Diet
2. Physical Activity

Small steps, but you will thank yourself one day.


2. Give Up The Short-term Mindset

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” — Mae West

Successful people set long-term goals, and they know these aims are merely the result of short-term habits that they need to do every day.

These healthy habits shouldn’t be something you do; they should be something you embody.

There is a difference between: “Working out to get a summer body” and “Working out because that’s who you are.”


3. Give Up On Playing Small

“Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone, and as we let our light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” Marianne Williamson

If you never try and take great opportunities, or allow your dreams to become realities, you will never unleash your true potential.

And the world will never benefit from what you could have achieved.

So voice your ideas, don’t be afraid to fail, and certainly don’t be afraid to succeed.


4. Give Up Your Excuses

“It’s not about the cards you’re dealt, but how you play the hand.”
― Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture

Successful people know that they are responsible for their life, no matter their starting point, weaknesses, and past failures.

Realising that you are responsible for what happens next in your life is both frightening and exciting.

And when you do, that becomes the only way you can become successful, because excuses limit and prevent us from growing personally and professionally.

Own your life; no one else will.


5. Give Up The Fixed Mindset

“The future belongs to those who learn more skills and combine them in creative ways.” ― Robert Greene, Mastery

People with a fixed mindset think their intelligence or talents are simply fixed traits, and that talent alone creates success — without effort. They’re wrong.

Successful people know this. They invest an immense amount of time on a daily basis to develop a growth mindset, acquire new knowledge, learn new skills and change their perception so that it can benefit their lives.

Remember, who you are today, it’s not who you have to be tomorrow.


6. Give Up Believing In The “Magic Bullet.”

“Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better” — Émile Coué

Overnight success is a myth.

Successful people know that making small continual improvement every day will be compounded over time, and give them desirable results.

That is why you should plan for the future, but focus on the day that’s ahead of you, and improve just 1% every day.


7. Give Up Your Perfectionism

“Shipping beats perfection.” — Khan Academy’s Development Mantra

Nothing will ever be perfect, no matter how much we try.

Fear of failure (or even fear of success) often prevents us from taking an action and putting our creation out there in the world. But a lot of opportunities will be lost if we wait for the things to be right.

So “ship,” and then improve (that 1%).


8. Give Up Multi-tasking

“You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.” ― Winston S. Churchill

Successful people know this. That’s why they choose one thing and then beat it into submission. No matter what it is — a business idea, a conversation, or a workout.

Being fully present and committed to one task, is indispensable.


9. Give Up Your Need to Control Everything

“Some things are up to us, and some things are not up to us.” — Epictetus, Stoic philosopher

Differentiating these two is important.

Detach from the things you cannot control, and focus on the ones you can, and know that sometimes, the only thing you will be able to control is your attitude towards something.

Remember, nobody can be frustrated while saying “Bubbles” in an angry voice.


10. Give Up On Saying YES To Things That Don’t Support Your Goals

“He who would accomplish little must sacrifice little; he who would achieve much must sacrifice much; he who would attain highly must sacrifice greatly.” — James Allen

Successful people know that in order to accomplish their goals, they will have to say NO to certain tasks, activities, and demands from their friends, family, and colleagues.

In the short-term, you might sacrifice a bit of instant gratification, but when your goals come to fruition, it will all be worth it.


11. Give Up The Toxic People

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
― Jim Rohn

People we spend the most time with, add up to who we become.

There are people who are less accomplished in their personal and professional life, and there are people who are more accomplished than us. If you spend time with those who are behind you, your average will go down, and with it, your success.

But if you spend time with people who are more accomplished than you, no matter how challenging that might be, you will become more successful.

Take a look at around you, and see if you need to make any changes.


12. Give Up Your Need To Be Liked

“The only way to avoid pissing people off is to do nothing important.” — Oliver Emberton

Think of yourself as a market niche.

There will be a lot of people who like that niche, and there will be individuals who don’t. And no matter what you do, you won’t be able to make the entire market like you.

This is entirely natural, and there’s no need to justify yourself.

The only thing you can do is to remain authentic, improve and provide value every day, and know that the growing number of “haters” means that you are doing important things.


13. Give Up Your Dependency on Social Media & Television

“The trouble is, you think you have time” — Jack Kornfield

Impulsive web browsing and television watching are diseases of today’s society.
These two should never be an escape from your life or your goals.

Unless your goals depend on either, you should minimise (or even eliminate) your dependency on them, and direct that time towards things that can enrich your life.


Call To Action

If you want to increase your productivity and eliminate procrastination, check out my free guide called: “The Ultimate Productivity Cheat Sheet.

Click here to get the guide right now!

PS: you will find the tip about making the most out of “Your Dead Time” fascinating!