I am beginning to understand.
I simply didn’t know any better. I didn’t know there was such a field that I am now starting to get lost in – epidemiology. And the reason I didn’t know is that I was simply not exposed to everything that is out there – not even close. Right now, since I’ve quit my old career, given up on building a business, and am trying to somehow make money, I have the unique opportunity to test out fields. I lucked out that I fell into a position where I can use my old skills in new ways despite the gaps that I am slowly filling on my own time. Bringing much of my life experience together, I am particularly interested in the impact of psychological trauma on physical health. At this point, I probably know just enough to be dangerous – and to start to get a glimpse at all that I don’t yet know (and want to learn).
I could blame my mother for not providing more guidance or guiding me into the wrong field. However, I want to step back and look at the bigger picture instead. How are parents supposed to help their children figure out a career choice when they don’t know all that’s possible either and when those children don’t have the luxury of dabbling, of trying things out, without having to worry about how they’ll survive? I suggest that this is yet another area where basic income could support a stronger society: If young adults have the basic financial support to spend time to find careers that fire them up, society can only win. So many older adults who have experience with being stuck in the wrong career know how much of a drain that is. We don’t give our best. I used to ensure that I would not stay a minute longer at work. Now I work on projects even on my day off because I love how much I am learning – and using what I am learning. It’s quite a difference. Plus, the exploring itself can be a way to give back, after all I’ve helped out in gardens, taught others about singlism, and cleaned up some data while I was trying things out.
So, let’s support this kind of real-world research until we find something that fires us up – whether it’s your first career or your third – by offering a basic income.