Can't Pick a Career Path

HomeForumsWorkCan't Pick a Career Path

New Reply
Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
  • Author
  • #112868

    Hi everyone,

    I’m feeling lost career-wise, and have since I graduated from college four years ago. Just a basic question, how do you pick a career path?

    I did my undergrad in Linguistics, emphasis in Chinese, and am currently getting a post-baccalaureate certificate in Digital Design. I did not follow through with a career in language because what few career options I found I did not find appealing. I am nearly finished with the digital design certificate, and love graphic design, but it’s a very competitive job market for very little pay. And again, I’m doubting whether it is the right career path / whether I am good enough to excel. I love language, culture, photography and visual communication, but can’t seem to pick a career path and stick to it.

    I’m frustrated with myself, as I’m almost 27 and feel that I still don’t have a career path. Does anyone have any ideas? Any input would be much appreciated!

    Thank you much.


    Dear Jen:

    Your difficulties:
    1. Language (emphasis on Chinese): “few career options I found I did not find appealing.
    2. Digital Design: “it’s a very competitive job market for very little pay.”
    and “whether I am good enough to excel”

    Keep an open mind regarding #1: gather more information on jobs/ opportunities in the Language/ Chinese field. Maybe something will appeal to you, something you overlooked or didn’t come across yet.

    Consider jumping into the digital design competitive market for very little pay- get the feel for it. Do it for a couple of years, see if you are improving your skills, if you will be getting excited about improving. Test yourself in the context of a job.



    Your interests also fall right into Tourism business. You can be a tour operator. You’ll get to know people from all around the world.. and you could visit many different places , take a pictures .. interesting job and very pleasant.
    Xxx good luck to you

    Rohail Bukhari

    Hi @muchisima5,

    I want to suggest a piece of advice that is very simple, but effective if you stick with it. Dont let the simplicity of this advice deceive you. If you are lost, first I want to give you peace of mind. Do you know that there are literally millions of people out there in a similar position as you? Well there are, so don’t feel frustrated. Now that that is out of the way, how to get yourself unstuck and moving in the direction you want to go to. The simple answer is….work on yourself.

    Dont let the simplicity of this idea deceive you. I am saying this from my own experience. I just kept focussing on myself and trying to improve the quality of who I was as a human being by establishing a positive relationship with myself, and that caused my life to gradually move in a different direction. You should do the same. What this will do is shift your focus emotionally. You mentioned that you majored in linguistics and emphasized in Chinese but couldnt find any good opportunities for them. And you are not so sure about the digital design either. But you also mentioned what you do love which is great. At least you know or at least have an idea of what you love. Focus on those thing and at the same time, figure out what it is you REALLY want out of life. this will take some thought and some guts because we can limit ourselves when it comes to what we want because we dont see how it is possible.

    In addition to that I would also suggest that you listen very carefully to your thoughts and find what you are naturally attracted to after you have made that change in focus to a more positive mentality. You will be surprised at what you might find. The things you mentioned about what you love may just be the beginning to something better. your passion can and probably will evolve. Once you have found that thing that you are truly passionate about, work at it. Then when you do that, doors will begin to open and you will find opportunities that will help you get to that next level of doing what you love. Hope this helps.

    -Rohail Bukhari from HabluFat Blogs!


    Thank you all so much for your input! You all are so insightful. I will definitely consider all of these points.

    Rohail Bukhari

    You are very welcome, @muchisima5. if you have any other questions regarding this or anything else, feel free to contact me.

    Vesta Hera

    With your skillset, have you looked into UX design? You would be working to understand people (cultures, likes, affinities, etc.) while using your graphical design skills to create user-friendly content?
    In the Bay Area, those jobs pay 6 figures.


    Hi Pallasathena, thanks so much for commenting. I appreciate it. I have considered UX design actually, and am currently in school for Digital Design. I do enjoy graphic design very much, but am not quite so passionate or enthusiastic about technology per se, so not sure if UX is the discipline for me. But I am quite interested, thanks so much for your thoughts.


    One thing I have discovered is that most people end up happily surprised by the direction their education has taken them, more often then not in directions that they never considered while taking their courses.

    Don’t let labels and expectations about what a carrier in a specific this or that must look like. Keep your yes open and see where you learned takes you.


    keep your mind on what makes you happy don’t worry about where you think you should be career wise and don’t be focusing on other people. You will fall into a job that you will love don’t think of your own deadlines.What will be will be


    I think the most important things to keep in mind is , your high points, and low points, and what you want to be in life, it’s all about your likes.

    Adam P

    Hi there Jen,
    The problem is not that you have difficulty selecting a career path, it’s the self discipline that you lack. The career path is just an “extra” addition in your life and the lack of self discipline adds to or complicates it. I would go back to your first post and after rereading it, suggest journaling ALL your thoughts and feelings regarding both Chinese and Digital Design. It’s obvious from your first post that you enjoy language and culture. Not to mention that you already know a language from the nation that has been and will continue to be heavily involved with both the economic and political sectors of the world. With the culture career, you placed outside/external barriers to succeeding. With the Digital Design, you don’t even enjoy it.How do I know? You just told us. I would do some more self digging when it comes to a career in language/culture with your background in Chinese and DEEPLY analyze yourself in both the culture career and digital design career. As well working on your self discipline is your 1st key step and if you can afford it, maybe hire a life coach.
    Thank You and Take Care


    Originally I wanted a computer animation path but I ended up in information technology side of things. But mine gets more personal cause my mom was the one who stopped me from that career since she knew individuals that didn’t make much money. I totally understand her concern every parent wants what’s best for their child. So I was disheartened and my dad ended up taking me to a computer store to learn computers at a mom and pop store. I grew my skills from there. I still love drawing etc. But what I’ve learn’t I can always do that on the side.

    In terms of gaining a well paying career here are two things you can do.

    I would say since graphic design certificate is something you’ve acquired keep it since it would be a waste of time and effort if you throw it all away. Find small gigs or businesses that want your artistic skills. Take your photography skills etc and mesh it with your graphics design capabilities in your resume. There are jobs out there where web developers need people with graphic design skills. I’m quite sure you have a open market available as competitive as it might be. I’d say do something you love either on the side and build it up till you’re making enough to make it a full time job.

    Second thing make a list of what you enjoy doing or have a skill set of doing. Now narrow that list down by matching that skill set and list of what you like with different job titles. You might be amazed with what you can relate with in terms of different job titles. Also talk to your counselor at college and share with them that list as an opinion or direction of career they can give you. Also feel free to talk to your teachers and use them as resources for finding jobs or gigs related to graphics design.

    I hope this helps. I do have a specific blog from my article that might help and spark the fire for no matter what you do :).

Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic. Please log in OR register.