I have a mostly right thinking (creative) brain with just enough left (analytical) brain mixed in to make things interesting. For example, math and I have never been good friends; but I love science. I would rather read than watch TV and I like to make certain things myself instead of purchasing them ready-made. In school my favorite subjects were English, art, science, history, and geology. When I started college, I was a business major. I didn’t have a set direction, but business seemed the most logical choice. If it were up to me, you would be able to major in creativity and learning.
My husband once said that my brain is full of “useless facts.” He’s right, although we later agreed to dub them “interesting facts” because often they have proven very useful. What I am trying to say is; I am a wealth of miscellaneous information. Does that make sense? I know a lot about a wide variety of subjects, but I’m not sure I’m an expert at anything.
Can you see where this is going yet?
My mostly right thinking brain, with just enough left brain mixed in, is a help and a hindrance. Having both a creative and analytical brain is helpful when you want to recreate something you found on Pinterest; or when a friend asks your opinion on design, shape, or color. It’s helpful when you want to map out trips, plan a garden, or when you need to create a pattern for gingerbread houses from scratch. It’s an asset when you write a letter, sew pillow covers, take up photography as a hobby, paint a mural on a wall, you want to tell a bedtime story to your children, and when visualizing how furniture will look in a room. It’s also great for learning a new software program, planning parties or fundraisers, problem solving, building furniture (yes, I can build furniture), and researching almost anything. Having both a creative and analytical brain isn’t great for…CHOOSING A CAREER DIRECTION.
What do you mean I can’t do everything? Can you really have too many interests? Personally, I think I can and I probably do. We’re studying genetics in my anthropology class right now and I’m beginning to believe creativity and learning might be part of my genetic code. Almost everything is interesting to me at some level. It boils down to this; I love learning. I also love variety and I do not like to be bored. Don’t get me wrong, I am all about a relaxing weekend and doing whatever I darn well please. I just don’t want to sit at a desk for eight hours (or more) pushing papers from one side to the other, or doing the exact same thing over and over and OVER.
This photo is a good representation of my brain. Disclaimer, if you look closely at the photo, you will notice some of those magazines are several years old. The right side of my brain says you never know when you might need that one photo, article, etc. right? It’s alright, I can own it. Remember, this post isn’t about clutter, my inability to toss clutter, or how said clutter clouds your brain. That’s definitely a topic for another day.
Some good friends of ours used to sit down together, at the beginning of each year, and talk about their five-year plan. A few times, I suggested to my husband that we could have the same tradition. I thought it was a great way for us to visualize what our life path looked like without having anything set in stone. My other half is not a big fan of change and wanted no part of it. He couldn’t understand why in the midst of one project, I was already contemplating the next. I tried to explain that for me, it was just about planning and having things to look forward to. I just wanted a jumping off point. His interpretation of my explanation was that I was never satisfied. In hindsight, I needed to create my own plan. If I had, I think becoming an “obsolete” mom could have been less paralyzing. (Sigh) Good old hindsight.
At 40-something, I have no interest in being a business major. Zip. Zero. None. So, when I decided to return to school and I had to choose a major, I waffled (have you ever tried to balance, on your knees, on an exercise ball?) You can’t get a degree in creativity and learning and I can only choose one major. Marketing? Biology? Communications? Computer Science? What if I make the wrong choice? Sure, I could have a minor also, but that still only covers two, of the twenty-eight, interests I might have at any given time. I needed a major with some real flexibility.
My younger daughter is a college freshman and an English major. She was undeclared, but as a college athlete you must choose a major to register for classes, so she and her counselor chose English. At this point, she has no idea where it will take her and that’s just fine. One afternoon we were discussing the career options available, beyond teaching, for someone with an English degree. Searching “careers for English majors”, we were surprised to learn how many choices there actually are – 100’s in fact! Light bulb moment!
Armed with that knowledge, I took that first step forward and decided to pursue a degree in English too. I’m not sure what I will do with it. Part of me wants that answer now, but how do I choose? I admire the people who know right away. Maybe I’ll teach. Maybe I’ll try several paths, who knows! How did you choose your life path?
The great thing about a new major, (plus my 20 year education gap!) is the bits of general education I need to finish will allow me to add to my plethora of #interestingfacts, and for now, I am just enjoying learning.