Week 8: When at a crossroad, choose what excites you
Have you ever found yourself at the crossroads, having to make a choice and worried about the consequences of the choice you are about to make?
I have, a fair few times.
And I found myself back at it a month ago when I had to choose an elective for the study term.
To help narrow down my options, I created a spreadsheet with details such as lecture time, course objectives, and grading format. I then added a preference column and sorted the options in ascending order, based on my interest levels.
But that did little in helping me decide.
You see, there was without doubt a clear winner, that one subject that excited both my brain and my heart. But enrolling in it would mean a long day of classes from 8.15am to 10.15pm; it would mean venturing into a new territory, studying something I‘ve always thought I was “bad” at.
And therein lies my dilemma. I did not know if I could do it.
So I picked up the phone and called Mum (what would I do without her?) And the dust settled at the first question she asked — “Which one do you like?”
In the words of Nietzsche—
“He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.”
I am currently 7 weeks into the term. Honestly, it hasn’t been easy — juggling multiple group projects, presentations, and individual assignments — all while striving not to feel overwhelmed. But as with all the other difficult times in life, I’ll make it through. And I won’t just make it through, I’ll make something out of it.
Younger me would have been stuck in a “what if” loop, even after making a choice. What if taking up that more “practical” subject increased my chances of being employed? What if taking the easier subject increased my GPA?
But a lesson I have learnt with crossroads was this — there is only one path in life, and that is the path you are currently on. It is a bit of a chicken and egg problem, but choices became a lot more easier once you get your head around it.
So the next time you arrive at a crossroad, struggling to make a decision, maybe, ask yourself — “Which one do you like?” And perhaps you will see the answer reveal itself.
P.S. While we’re on the subject of crossroads, here’s a book recommendation — The Midnight Library. And my favourite quote from it, albeit long —
“She might have missed those particular opportunities that led her to become an Olympic swimmer, or a traveler, or a vineyard owner, or a rock star, or a planet-saving geologist, or a Cambridge graduate, or a mother, or the million other things, but she was still in some way all those people. They were all her.”