A lot of my older professors, supervisors, counselors, and even friends, constantly nag me for going into legal advocacy, rather than pursuing a job that "pays more." I get told almost daily that with my sets of skills, my loaded resume, and my go-getter work ethic, that I would do so well literally anything that makes the big bucks.
Here's the thing: I want to be paid in changing someone's life and making an impact, rather than being paid the big bucks in a job I wouldn't be happy in.
Don't get me wrong: I love money. It's obviously a necessity, but I love my high end makeup and shoes. I love to spoil my boyfriend, and take us on trips, however my mindset is on more than just spending money and living lavishly. My entire life, I was told money was the way to go: help others, but in return, get something back. Quid pro quo: a favor for a favor. And to a certain extent, that is a great way of living so you get what you deserve for the work you do. Growing up and volunteering at different places, however, has changed my way of life.
I work 5 jobs: 3 of which are unpaid, and used for professional growth. Those three jobs are crucial to my future, as I am gaining valuable knowledge in the field, and figuring out what I want to do with life. I am making connections, building my resume, and most importantly, making change in people's lives. The career I want to go into makes great money, but it isn't as much as I would make being a CEO of a business or a doctor.
And that's the thing: I don't want to work a job I dislike for the rest of my life just for money, when I know my passion is in making change in the world.
So the next time someone tells me I need to reconsider my future, I'll just smile and nod. Because this isn't their future for their taking — I'm claiming it as mine.