5 Reasons to Follow Your Passion, Not the Economy

Each year, college freshmen sign up for their classes with one thing in mind: money. What can I study to get a job that will earn me the most money? It's the question that haunts the soon-to-be adults. Too many kids are throwing away their dreams of being artists and writers and dancers and teachers because they’ve been discouraged by the number written on their future paychecks. What they don’t realize (until it’s far too late) is how hard it is to succeed at something that you aren’t passionate about. So before you pack up your paintbrushes and pursue a business degree, consider the following:

Getting out of bed will be harder than it already is. You can barely climb down from the top bunk to get coffee from the dining hall, why would you get up for business math? Gross.

The highest-paying majors are typically in fields that are uncomfortably competitive. Yes, you can get that incredible job, IF you get the internship. The internship that hundreds of other students are applying for, who are just as qualified and twice as hungry for it.

You’ll have to divide your time—which you already don’t have enough of. Pursuing a degree for the profit of it means pushing your passion to the back burner and having to leave time for it later. Why not get paid for doing what you love? Two birds, one stone.

Going into college undecided is a great way to test the waters. Besides your basic general studies, you can take exciting classes that peak your interest, like fiction writing or human sexuality, to help you find what you want to spend four years studying. Plus, if you decided halfway down the road that you do indeed hate your major, it can be difficult to make all those credits count toward your new study. (Read: lots of time and money wasted).

Your career has a shelf life; your passion does not. The job you train for now could become obsolete in a few years, whereas your hobby could become the basis of a multi-million-dollar job market. Save yourself the trouble of realizing you're at a dead end and throwing your phone in a fountain in Paris.