It seems to be increasingly confusing for young people to decide what direction to take through school and beyond. The familiar question, ‘what do you want to be when you grow up?’ is not so easily answered as it was ten or twenty years ago.
When I started teaching, my classes were full of people wanting to be footballers, hairdressers, artists, lawyers, doctors, architects and of course taking over the family business. Now, my classes are full of young people who become slightly fidgety and contemplative when I ask them what they want to after school.
Is this because there are so many options out there now?
Is it because young people are aware of the options there are?
Is it because it is so much more difficult to know what one has to do to become someone who does the range of unfamiliar sounding careers there are these days?
Or is it because young people have grown up with a different view of what success is?
Is success becoming a doctor or lawyer?
Or is it becoming somehow one of those people who are in the limelight of media or social media?
Or have values changed?
Whatever the reason, the following is an attempt to help young people find a direction even if they don’t know what it is they want to do.
Rule No 1: Know yourself
Rule No 2: Keep your options open when unsure
Rule No 3: Know what’s out there – find out what the possibilities are
Rule No 4: Put all your effort into everything you’re doing – usually this reveals your goals
Rule No 5: Find a direction – you might not know what you want exactly, but try to find a general direction
Rule No 6: Remember, being the best holistic learner you can be provides you with the greatest chances of happiness and success both now and in the future!
In other words:
The most important message for young people to understand and act on is this: