5 Things You Realize When You Declare A Major That Won’t Make You Any Money

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Did you just declare a major that isn’t considered a “safe bet for financial security”? Or one that is generally frowned upon because people say you’re taking “the easy way out”? You are not alone. I recently dropped the pursuit of a business degree and I felt like it was the end of the world. Coming from a family of business majors, I had broken the chain. I felt stupid, useless, and doomed for the future. I couldn’t help it. Business just wasn’t for me–but what was I going to do? I couldn’t imagine myself sitting in an office crunching numbers all day. Of course, finding a job after college would be exponentially easier. Business, and all other majors that are generally done for the money gained, can be comforting in this economy. I call these majors monetary majors. But sometimes you have to follow your heart and declare a not-so-appealing-to-your-parents major. Here are some thoughts and realizations I had when I did just that. Maybe you experienced the same ones.

1. I May Have Just Effed Up My Whole Life
When you declare a major that is not known to bring in the dough, your initial thought is, “Damn, I might regret this.” And chances are, in some aspects you will. Just keep in mind that every major is like this, though. Regret is a feeling that every single person graduating college will have at some point, regardless of what he or she majored in. You are not the one in a million.

2. I Have To Come To Terms With Not Succeeding Right Away
Typically, non-monetary majors have to start at the bottom and fight to the top. Monetary majors tend to get better pay in their first jobs. You just have to be okay with seeing the big picture and want it enough to deal with this unfortunate fact.

3. I May Have To Work More Than One Job At Once
Remember, you are declaring this major because you love it and are passionate about it. Although you may have to work more than one job to make ends meet, do not give up on your dream–it’s why you worked so hard in the first place.

4. How Am I Different From The Person Next To Me?
With monetary majors being a dime a dozen, you have to be recognizable among the crowd. You must be creative and hardworking. If what you majored in is the love of your life, this should be no problem. Get active with what you want to do for your career and get your name out there! Show everyone that you deserve to be noticed.

5. My Major Is What I Make Of It
This is probably the reason you went ahead and declared your major instead of a monetary major. Use your major wisely and stay on the path that will lead you to achieving your dream. You are the only one who can make it happen. Not all monetary majors are successful, and not all non-monetary majors are unsuccessful. Be special. It’s not about sheer luck–it’s about your damn hard work. Set an example that nothing is impossible and everything is achievable.

Despite what our society says about money and “stable jobs,” you can make it. Sure, you will encounter difficulties. Sure, you may have to pull a few strings and meet a lot of people who can do that, too. Sure, you may encounter some people who will throw out an “I told you so” when you’re down on your luck. Sure, you may not be completely satisfied with what you are doing, but you’re working your way to the top. Don’t you at least owe it to yourself to attempt to find fulfillment through your passion? I like to think so. Know this: by declaring a non-monetary major, you are not being lazy. You are not taking the easy way out. You are actually doing quite the opposite–you’re declaring that you love yourself enough to follow your dreams and that you’re willing to work hard for them. To me, that is far more respectable than sitting in a cubicle. Wouldn’t you agree?

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Emily is currently trying to finish all seasons of Greek on Netflix, eats an unhealthy amount of chocolate every day, and is very easily distracted. She resides in Southern Orange County, CA.

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