So, My Entire Life Is A Mess — But I'm Thriving Anyway

This piece has been syndicated from Her Campus at WVU. You can join a chapter at your school (or start your own!).

I changed my major three times before I even started my first semester of college. I know people who changed their major during their junior year of college. I know people who have been in college for six years and do not have their degree yet. I also know people who have graduated and are not employed in the career of their choice right now. All of this is completely okay and very normal, but there is such a negative stigma on not knowing what you’re doing.

Studies show that 80 percent of college students change their major at least one time within their first three years of school, and it takes an average of three to six months after graduation to be employed. So, if it takes you a couple semesters to figure out your major, if you don’t immediately get a great job after graduation or if it takes you a little longer than expected to graduate, it’s okay! Statistically speaking, there are a lot of people that are in the same boat as you, and you are definitely not alone.

There is no right or wrong way to success, and there is certainly not a set timeline you need to follow.

It is so easy to feel like a failure because of the pressure placed on us by ourselves and others. But the truth is: we are way too young to be failures. You’re allowed to make mistakes, you’re allowed to change your major and you’re allowed to have no clue what you’re doing. Because, honestly, does anyone really know what they’re doing? Things hardly ever go as planned, yet we are expected to have every little detail of our futures planned out.

We are too busy worrying about what the future holds to be proud of what we’ve achieved so far. Instead of celebrating our accomplishments of the fall semester over Christmas break, we are stressing and worrying about the spring semester. Instead of being excited about graduation, we are worried about what comes next. There is so much pressure to be successful and make everyone around you proud, but I think it’s more important to make yourself proud and do what makes you happy. 

Why should you be forced into a major or career just because it was time for you to decide? Why should you be expected to immediately jump into a career the day after you graduate? Even though society tells us otherwise, it is okay to make mistakes and take your time when you’re deciding and planning out your future. It took me a while to figure out what exactly I wanted to do at school, and it very well may change as I take more classes and experience new things. At the end of the day, you decide what you want to do with your life and you shouldn’t let anyone tell you or make you feel that what you’re doing right now isn’t enough.

Maybe you won’t figure your life out tomorrow, or next week, or even a month from now, but one day you will. Everything will fall into place eventually – it always does.