Question: What should I do with my life? Answer: Whatever makes you happiest.

For everyone who asks “What should I do with my life?” there is someone who responds by asking “What would you do if you had a million dollars?”

The question is supposed to identify what you would do if money was no object. Ideally, your answer is then used to help you determine what to do with your life. For instance, if you want to rebuild car engines all day, then you should be an auto mechanic. If you want to tend to your garden all day, then you should be a gardener. The desire to play piano all day means you should be a musician — and so on.

Although this “millionaire method” may help some people determine their life’s calling, it’s hardly perfect. The question often leads to answers that can’t be translated into a corresponding profession. “Pay off debt,” “Invest,” and “Travel” are all things that someone could do with a million dollars, but these replies provide little insight as to what they should do with their life.

Among these unhelpful replies was the one I always used: “I don’t know.”

I don’t know what I’d do if I had a million dollars. Furthermore, I don’t know why I don’t know. Maybe I complicate the question somehow — wondering when, or how it could happen. Maybe I get distracted by how preposterous the idea is that my mind never registers the actual question. Or maybe I’m unimaginative, and choose to say “I don’t know” for lack of a better answer.

Whichever the case, it’s clear that the millionaire method couldn’t help me. In time, I understood that was expected, because life isn’t that simple.

Everyone is unique. I’m unique. You’re unique. Consequently, it’s downright impossible to define a single, simple, and universally effective question that will identify everyone’s purpose in life. That’s why the millionaire method doesn’t work for everyone, and it’s for this same reason that so many other strategies for discovering your life’s purpose exist:

Steve Jobs suggests living each day as if it were your last.
Brian Kim suggests embracing your strengths.
Steve Pavlina suggests tweaking your life purpose until it makes you cry.

The thing is, when you’re searching for your life’s calling, you can’t rely on anyone else to tell you precisely what you’re searching for. They may offer advice to help advance your search, but it’s up to you to complete it.

I say this because no one else has experienced your unique experiences or ever will. The feelings you have are unique to you alone, and as such, no one else can possibly know what makes you happiest — only you do.

Therefore, the best advice I can offer you is to do whatever makes you happiest. You’re certain to know what it is once you’ve found it, because you’ll instinctively know that you’ll never be as happy doing anything else.

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44 Responses to “Question: What should I do with my life? Answer: Whatever makes you happiest.”

#1 domce on 21, Aug, 2007 at 1:24 am

Before you decide what you should do with your life, I would suggest to get informed. When you realize it’s not all about money and fame, your goals also change. Remember, you’re not your day job. You can still be a free artist, musician in your free time. Reward yourself with things you create, and not with things you buy.

#2 Patrick Allmond on 21, Aug, 2007 at 1:31 am

What follows is not an answer, but here are some good thoughts about the question:

Don’t ask the millionaire question. Ask one that is just about the opposite. What would do for free every single day a year? I would fly as an unpaid job if given the option (and I could eat and maintain my family). I’d also play piano, and I’d lecture on self improvement. These are things that give me immense joy for free.


#3 Anders on 21, Aug, 2007 at 1:50 am

Shaun> How do you do it? The last couple of days, I started to ask myself: What should I do with my life?

And now you put up this article.

Once again you inspire me to move on with my life. Just last night, one of my friends again asked me (again!) to switch job over to where he works. And even with the higher pay and more interesting work, I haven’t been able to convince myself to switch job. I have been to lazy!

Reading this – and other of you writings – have made me to seriously think about accept his jobproposal.

Keep it up!

#4 Gerhi Janse van Vuuren on 21, Aug, 2007 at 3:08 am

The millionaire question works for some people because they are motivated by money. If you are motivated by power it is the Bruce Almighty question: ‘What would you do if you can do anything?’
If you are motivated by prestige or reputation it’s the book question: ‘What is the title of your autobiography?’
If you are motivated by significance it’s the ‘What’s on your tombstone’ question.
None of these questions answers your question though because as Shaun says, we’re all unique.
What makes you happy, what do you get lost in, what would you do for free?
These are more questions – all tools. Here’s wjat I think. You do something today and if it does not feel right you do it different tomorrow. You do that every day until you get it right. And then you keep on adjusting that rightness to stay on course.
The big problem is with the question: “What should I do with my life?” You can’t answer it, you can only live it.

#5 Matt @ Realigned Living on 21, Aug, 2007 at 10:39 am

I agree with what you suggested – you should go after whatever makes you happiest. But since a large number of people have no earthly clue what makes them the happiest, first they have to figure out what that is. Then they can go about making a life-long career out of it. 😛

#6 Derrick Kwa on 21, Aug, 2007 at 11:01 am

Good advice, I think.

What we should be doing is what our passion is, and here are my tips for finding out what your passion.

Just thought I’d add my thoughts.

#7 Dave @ UselessFreeAdvice on 21, Aug, 2007 at 2:30 pm

For most people, this is too big a question. Most people have enough trouble seeing to the end of the day, let along with the rest of their life.

For a good read, check out ‘The Art of Happiness’ by the Dali Lama. Sat down and read it the other day.

Essentially (and I’m no Buddhist) it is about doing things that make you happy!

#8 Bobby Karaoke on 22, Aug, 2007 at 3:38 am


You write “I say this because no one else has experienced your unique experiences or ever will.”

I disagree. I’m kind of a big deal in the karaoke world, but I would argue that many of the ‘smaller fish’ have experienced the EXACT SAME heartbreak and elation that I have. From the boos on a bad night, to the approval of a drunken crowd on a good night… I would argue, it’s the same stuff over and over again. Never any better, never any worse. Maybe I’m just stuck in a moment and I can’t get out of it.


Your Uncle Bobby

#9 charley on 25, Feb, 2008 at 8:53 am

What if you just don’t fit in anywhere?What if you are a born drifter? the millionaire question doesn’t work because a million quid would not give me the answer of what I am supposed to be, neither would the title of my autobiography etc, I’m not particuarly unique and have no idea what I am supposed to be doing. I’m an unemployed 25 year old woman with no direction, living with her parents in a poor seaside town on the south of England. I’m fucked.

#10 Dave on 10, Sep, 2008 at 9:57 am

Hi Charley
Your self-description sounds just like mine. Do you want to get hitched?

#11 kristoffe on 16, Sep, 2008 at 7:49 pm

I found this just by Googling the words “What should I do”. Interesting that with over 50,000,000 results, it was at the very top. I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one, but at the same time I wish everyone knew what to do. When you’re 27 and have a family to support, you’ll do anything to make it. I wish when I was younger, I really went for what I loved to do because now that I want to makea change from I.T and back to the arts, it’s very hard. As a kid, I was passionate about I.T. For some reason, I just loved fixing problems. It’s a little different now, because it’s not rewarding and there’s not a whole lot of growth opportunities. Anyway, best of luck to you all

#12 theresa on 05, Oct, 2008 at 11:55 pm

Beer, my boyfriend’s company, dive bars, strong drinks, live music, kareoke, when the Cubs, Bears and Bulls win, The Lantern’s spicy chicken wings, days off, Fridays, my cat Silver, the Doors, seeing my friends all together again, a clean room, a made up bed, clean linens, really, anything clean makes me very happy. I seem to be a bit OCD which is perfect for my love for design. I once said I want to live my life in color… I want to wake up at 9 and be at work by 10, maybe earlier… I may just find an empty bottle of wine out in the yard from the night before. …I will NOT be afraid to live because I think my job may not be there the next day. Anyway, I’m thinking every which way… I love many things. I know what I want to do, I am just choosing to take my time. I don’t think it’s the best idea to wait but money’s tight and I wanna go to school for design. People say you don’t need to but I think it just might look better on paper, plus, I love school and would love the professional guidance. So, to answer the question ‘What would you do if you had a million dollars’? I would in fact pay off my debt, my family’s too, buy a place and pay for school and open my own design center so I can change peoples lives! And, yes, I’d do it for free, that’s just how much I love it…

#13 Chan Dhillon on 28, Jan, 2009 at 1:09 pm

What should you do with your life? Simply “do”. Everything that you do simply “do” and the answer will come. Whatever you are doing whether talking with someone, reading, playing hop-scotch with your friends, being pushed around the streets in an office chair by your friends – simply “do”. Even if you are at work, doing something which is considered tedious if you simply and fully “do” – the answer will come of its own accord. Do not force the answer. In doing there will be great strength.

As a matter of fact that is exactly what I will do now. I have exams to read for, but do so with great trepidation, unknowing as to what life’s course will set out for me. But whatever I do I will make an effort to instill it with strength, and not be mindful of the results, but simply “do” and the rewards will appear as will value in whatever we “do”

Best of luck……

#14 Sean Hadley on 12, Feb, 2009 at 4:26 pm

What about reality. I cant do what i want to do without spending 1/4 my life in college!

#15 Isabella on 19, Jun, 2009 at 8:25 am

i do believe that i should do what ever makes me happy, and i do have even if it was a slight idea of what does makes me happy. i also want to succeed in what do, but the thing is that im so afraid of failing, i have tried a couple of things before and put my heart into it, but i failed. i know that if im doing the thing that makes me happy it wouldnt matter, but i guess my problem is that succeeding in what im doing is part of what makes me happy.

#16 Rosie on 14, Oct, 2009 at 12:17 am

I am a 29 year old with no idea what to do! I have worked in management in London, worked as a fruitpicker and on yatchs all over the world and am about to return to uni to do a masters in a course I’m not sure is right for me! All I want to do is be a writer and have been trying to get published for almost a year … and know that being a writer is a shit way to make a living. I also want to be rich!

Any advice?

#17 Victoria on 26, Oct, 2009 at 6:35 pm

Yeah, the problem is, most of that stuff I would like to do for free, really does have to be for free, because there is no way I could make a living doing it. I would love to sit around all day and learn how to play piano and cook brownies and make stained glass. Meanwhile, I will get evicted. Its so hard to find that balance of practical and enjoyable. I also dont want to work at a job that requires so many hours that I cant see my friends and family members. And I cant afford to go to college even I knew what I wanted to learn. Fuck, I hate being in limbo. Thats it, Im going to a palm reader or something……..

#18 Jack Goldman on 29, Oct, 2009 at 2:13 pm

Trick question. The tribe and the Universe will give two contrary answers. Money and love are different answers. The tribe says do what pays the best. The Universe says do what you love. We humans are the middle path in between the tribe and Universe that both battle for our time and life. Balance requires we do what pays the best AND what we love as a balancing act. As life changes we continue to fine tune things. Make money. Be happy. Jack Goldman, St. Paul, MN

#19 berta on 10, Nov, 2009 at 2:35 pm

Good question! I am looking for an answer long enought to be tired. How is it possible that so many people just know and others dont have an idea? “Two roads diverged into wood and I, I took the one less traveled by …”, but where I am going? Do what will make you happy?! What if I dont know what makes me happy? I like to do lots of things but I did not discover passion yet. I feel empty. I am 31, very well educated, but not successful. Do I wasting my time, what should I do? I can not come up with the answer…

#20 clare on 23, Dec, 2009 at 7:25 pm

I have asked this question all my life and still have no answer. I am 43. I sometimes wish I was 27 or 29 or 31 or however old/young some of you are. I still have NO idea. And now my ex-the love of my life is dying-and he could just take life by storm, I never met anyone with such a gift for living. He lived in the present and yet made long term goals, and reached them, some of them-there were so many plans-only a fraction destined to happen. I guess he wasnt afraid to dream or afraid to push his limits. And still, even now, do I know the answer?NO. I guess it is just an intensely personal thing. And maybe we think too much and ask that question too much. Sometimes I find when I stop asking, I start living, a little.

#21 SS on 10, Jun, 2010 at 8:15 am

It seems Jack has given the most sensible answer to me. Its sensible and perfectly make sense but too practical perhaps for me, what should I do with my life???

Let me tell you bit about of my life. i will make it short though. I use to know it all why I was born in this world for and what I have to do as my duty for the community and for the world. Yes I used to be very ambitious as well as had life long plans very specifically in detail till my last day I live etc. also I used to be so passionate too passionate perhaps about everything in life, when I was late teen crazy about dance, early twenties crazy about photography, late twenties too crazy about design and my business and now I’m mid thirties n been running my own business for 7 years and have few employees, I am attractive, sophisticated, smart, friendly, living in a nice place in a nice area, lot of friends, many male suitors..ahh you name it all. people think that I am successful and happy.

Once I bumped into a friend of mine from uni, who I haven’t seen for sometime but always kept in touch with, and asked me, how are you going SS? my answer was well, I’m ok just bit down that’s all..and he replied with astonished face..”you? SS you? you have everything going and I think you would be the last person feeling depressed!” it was indeed a shock to me…my image, my status, my position…oh, of cause, I should be happy for who I am where I am!!

That question! what am I living for? What should do with my life? When that question struck me like thunder one morning and I couldn’t bear it anymore to live on like before. once I lost the meaning of life, it was/is hard to go back to where I used to be who I used to be. since then all my dreams and life long plans seem such a meaningless and worthless echo. now I am living the life day by day without excitement, without plans, without much feeling what so ever toward to anything to anyone. SAD! really SAD!! I don’t smile as I used to, I am just a little robot up and work and sleep without feelings without emotions. The problem is that I DON’T KNOW WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY ANYMORE” so I cannot even try to do anything to make myself happy..Hah!! what a tragic it is!!

now, I am even questioning myself, Its no point of living then why should I get up every morning? I should just continue sleep and never up again. hmmmm..well it sounds pretty depressing isn’t it? Yes, indeed indeed it is depressing!

I don’t know how long I can cope things like this or living on like this. But again I don’t know what I should do to have myself back on or discover the meaning of life so that I could continue be who I am to be part of this world.

I JUST DON’T KNOW what tomorrow would be like. As if there is ever tomorrow exist for me.
Thank god, I still be able to think though…but this thinking is the problem.!!

Thank you for reading.

#22 Lila37 on 21, Jun, 2010 at 8:49 am

SS – I get it. What do you do when you’ve achieved success. You’ve got where you aimed to be – where you always thought you should be… and it turns out that it makes you absoloutely miserable. I’m in the same position and would really love some advice! I left what I was doing, and am much happier. BUT, I’m lost. Where to from here? How do I even know?

Any ideas, from anyone, would be much appreciated.

#23 SS on 25, Jun, 2010 at 12:16 am

Hi Lila,

well, i hope i am in the position where i can give you a brilliant answer or advise, unfortunately still looking for an answer too. life goes on..but its not quite a life is it? i hope i can help you or you can help me. just hoping something will happen and it changes our life and we become happy and motivated again…. lets hope for it. however not good enough… only what i can say is that hold on..hold on to the life for a while till it turns…:)
take care.

#24 mela on 22, Aug, 2010 at 12:50 am

I thought, i was the only person going thru this phase, but reading this forum, i feel i have friends who feel the same way. Although i don’t know any one of you, i can relate to what you say.
I too have everything anyone could wish for, but i am not happy, cause i don’t know what makes me happy…I feel guilty for not being satisfied with what life has given me and always being depressed. I truly hope it is just a phase… and it will end soon.

#25 ms. drews on 02, Oct, 2010 at 5:18 pm

I don’t really know why I am even putting this out there, but here goes. I am bored and lonely. My husband is gone all the time (although I’ve come to not mind this anymore), all I have in life is tending to kids, house, errands, bills etc. His schedule makes it too difficult for me to really have anything of my own. I love my kids and I used to love being home to care for them- but I don’t anymore because it is all my life consists of now.
I don’t know how to find something else. I have put myself last for so long, that now I really have created a little prison for myself and I can’t get out. I don’t do anything, I don’t earn money, I don’t help others, I don’t have a passion for anything and now I don’t know how to get out of this hole. I have no idea what makes me happy, or how to find it. My husband who is basically good, but very selfish and moody, works in law enforcement and is gone sometimes nights, sometimes weekends, sometimes holidays, and any time the SWAT pager beeps, so how do I even try to schedule anything for myself?
I’ve never worked and so therefore have no job to go back to, plus I have been out of college just long enough to make me feel like a moron (hours of silly sing song cartoons and diaper duty will do that to you).
So what now?? Try to start a career, search for some hobby I love, I have even considered an extra marital affair, just to have something that is mine. I love my kids so much, and my little bulldog makes me happy- but fuck if that’s enough in life.

#26 Tony on 19, Oct, 2010 at 3:27 am

Ms. Drews–I would suggest not having an extra-marital affair, for starters. Instead, try to embrace what you have. After all, you did choose to marry him. Choose to be married to him now. That’s all the advice I can offer anyone. Indeed, life does suck when you have no direction, huh?

#27 stephen on 26, Oct, 2010 at 8:27 pm

i REALLY enjoyed this page and the comments, thank you to everyone; you may have saved me years of wasted time.

to ms. drews: i agree with tony; dont think that an extra-marital affair will help! it WILL offer you some small and fleeting sense of adventure and perhaps pleasure, however, that will dissipate very soon and only leave you off worse than before! (with guilt, secrecy, etc.)
i would really suggest better COMMUNICATION with your husband– have you told him all or any of this? he needs to know that you’re unfulfilled so he can at least talk with you or even help you out (but it’s not his responsibility to fulfill you; only GOD can do that), and also so he can do his part to ‘be there’ for you more.

and i’ve been unemployed for 3 years- this recession has caused a lot of us to wonder, WTF? why am i so useless/ purposeless, etc… it might be the same even if you did have a ‘good’ job/career!, like so many of the comment-ers here.
seek a personal and/or marriage counselor. love and peace

#28 joey americo on 31, Oct, 2010 at 11:06 pm

I can’t believe the amount of people out there in the same predicament as myself. Reading all this has really made me feel better about myself. I’m 21 years old, and a sailor in the US NAVY. I feel really out of place and lonely because I’m not your typical sailor who enjoys trashing other countries when sailing from port to port, getting drunk and having promiscuous sex. So this job of mine is out of the question as soon as my contract is over. I actually joined the military to find myself and bounce around hoping to come across things that make me happy and find that missing thing I’m searching for. So far I’ve found nothing. I don’t know what I want for a career, I am starting college in a month and have no idea what I want to take up other than space, and I can’t think of anything practical I could do for a living because everything I’ve thought of are all hobbies, not jobs. I really just want to meet that woman of my dreams and love her and take care of her. That’s really it. Just be a warm loving guy. What kind of job is that? I can seem to find myself and I understand that this is starting to sound redundant after reading all these posts but its so damn frustrating! Whens going to be my time?

#29 RT on 08, Nov, 2010 at 10:00 pm

Like so many others I have been sitting at my desk for the last 4 hours thinking about whether I actually want to be here anymore (work not being alive!!) To the point I have applied for other jobs….. but then I cant help but think I have floated from one job to another since leaving University and I dont know what will make me happy! Similar to SS – all my friends seem to think just because I moved to Australia from the UK that I must be happy all the time (who am I kidding, thats what I thought would happen the moment I boarded the plane!) But I feel the same way I did a year ago when I left England…bored and unfulfilled….. and like a child who has just run away from all her problems!!!
I understand where you are coming from Joey A, sometimes I think if I cant find satisfaction in my career maybe I should become a wife and mother? But the thing that terrifies me the most is that unlike a job I wouldnt be able to just walk away from a husband or kids – hense I never let people get too close and am single at 25! I just wanted some space and ‘me time’ to figure my life out, and 12 months later im no closer to finding the answers – I dont know what to do with my life or what will make me happy!! Can anyone tell me what will??

#30 Lost and not found on 12, Nov, 2010 at 11:10 pm

I am feeling the same way as most of you, what is the point, the purpose anymore? I have no passion no more. When I was 18 I had so much passion for life. I wanted to travel, write books and do so many things.. I did travel and I am still working on the book after nearly 10 years of writing it. I feel lost, like what is the point of it all. I think the world sucks, people are mean and do horrible things and it is now either all about celebs or no one. If your a celeb then things are good and if your not who cares about you. I am so indecisive that if I did find what I wanted to do I couldnt decide on if it was right and spend months thinking if it is what I want to do.. Ahhh.. I wish I could just go be alone in a field with peace and quiet for years but that isnt gong to happen anytime soon. May everyone here figure out what it is we are looking for.. however I think it is in Heaven and not here on this evil earth. Good luck everyone… find that smile and remeber what it feels like and never let it go.. I wish I could.

#31 ??? on 06, Dec, 2010 at 1:54 am

You guys, and I mean all of you, need to start dreaming again. For many people, reaching a dream isn’t enough; you need to simply set a higher goal.
For people unhappy with their families or situation in general, just strive to be a better family member/person/professional/etc yourself. It’s like in a sporting event: when you start running as hard as you possibly can at every opportunity, the game has meaning, is more enjoyable, and you certainly do better in it. You need to jump out of bed every morning, and go further for both yourself, your career, and those around you. And remember that although running away usually doesn’t help, be open to change.

#32 Harold Cooney on 19, Jan, 2011 at 6:01 am

I am very thankful to this topic because it really gives great information ~;”

#33 Ermmy on 10, Feb, 2011 at 6:24 am

I have been living the same experience as most of these replies. the one thing that always renews my joy for life is coming closer to death. When I was in my teens and early twenties I was self destructive because I was bored in life. I joined the military at 28 and been serving 2 years now…I still get bored and depressed when doing daily activities but when I go on missions and come back alive the next couple weeks are incredable. I don’t know if this life style is real healthy (can’t be with the high risk factor) but it makes me feel alive. Minor daily activities are enjoyable again knowing this could be the last time I do them.

When I retire I’m going to take up sky diving or deepsea diving, any thing risky.
Thanks for listening and hope this helps.

#34 stuck on 19, Feb, 2011 at 3:52 am

i remember my mom said to me once…”wherever you go, there you are”. it’s been ringing in my ears all day and thought i’d share. you see, i’ve been searching for ‘happiness’ by moving around or chasing loves for about 12 years now….and still i seem to face myself again and again. so i stop to smell the flowers, i really do! but i’m still stuck with the longing to leave again.

#35 A on 23, Feb, 2011 at 6:28 am

I’m glad I’m not the only one. I’m nearing 20, and I’m feeling this way. Like others on this board, I have no idea what makes me happy! I feel as though I’ve lost every last drop of inspiration I had, by moving around and around and becoming even more confused. But that’s all I do is move or ‘runaway’. I used to have passions, but now even those are far-off memories. I’m nolonger sure what I’m truly passionate about and what path to take anymore. I long for happiness and some stability in my life. And I know it comes unexpectedly, so I will continue to wait and try taking steps forward. It’s out there somewhere, right?..

#36 CHRISSY on 28, Mar, 2011 at 9:29 pm

Wow. How amazing it feels to read all of these comments and see that there are so many other people feeling the same way I do. I am 25 and do not know what I want to do, well I do, I just am scared to do it. I feel like I should already have a degree by now and spend my days thinking about what I should do at uni. When I do find something that could be ok, it doesn’t take me long to change my mind and realise that’s not what I want to do. I am about to start in a well paid job in the Australian Public Service. My parents love this and are so proud. I say I’m thinking about doing … uni and they say why? Why pay all that money when you can go so far without a degree. Which is very true. What I really want to do is have a job that allows me the money to design and make clothes to sell. The job I am about to start would allow this, so why not right? My partner has a degree, as does all his family and all their partners. I am the only one without and it makes me feel inadequate. I know this is what started my thing with having to do a degree. I know I should not care what they think and just do what I want. It is really hard though. Give me the STRENGTH!

#37 Same Problems on 29, Mar, 2011 at 11:58 pm

Reading all of your posts made me feel a lot better. I am almost 20 years old, and I’m at a pretty low point in my life. I got into a very good college right out of high school, but it wound up not turning me on and I dropped out. I’m now living with my parents and attending a much worse college, and I really don’t know what to do with myself.

When I was in high school, it seemed like everything was very clear-cut and simple. I expected to get into a good college, discover what turned me on, study a few years, and then become some sort of scientist or academic or professional. And now everything just feels sort of messed-up, like my life didn’t go the way it was supposed to.

But, life goes on. There’s no going backwards, only forwards. I may not be going to a great school, and I may be moping around with nothing to do and no inspiration, living at home, but I’m still me. I still have all the intelligence and creativity that I value in myself, i just need to find a way to use it…

So maybe things won’t be as easy as I expected, but I’m not giving up. And it gives me a lot of strength to hear all of your stories and know that I’m not alone, and that things don’t go as planned for a lot of people.

#38 Lost on 19, Apr, 2011 at 3:31 pm


I am 37 eyars and have not been working for one year now. Prior to that have been working on and off as a Manager, Supervisor, etc, contracts and temporary assignemnts. I had to quit many times due to my health and then the cycle began again of applying for jobs and attending interview. My employers have no complaints about my quality of work and I always do a great job. Recently, I have become so depressed that I changed my resume, removed all my credentials and started applying for call center jobs. I got an entry level sales position and went for it, couldnt do sales as I dont like to “lie” to people, well if you ask me I am going to tell u…so that didnt work out well. I am an A student, pick up things fast but looks like I am more comfortable applying for entry level positions and advancing my career. I dont know if its due to the years of frustration, sick of applying jobs and attending interview, most of the time overqualified and when I remove stuff from the resume, I am told I lack qualifications. I dont know anymore…going back to school is fine but what do I do? I am moving in to a basement due to financial and that is not doing well with my thinking either.
Help!! Any input appreciated!!

#39 Jimbo on 08, May, 2011 at 9:43 am

Hey I just thought i would add my two pennies worth. I feel the exact same stuff as the rest of you out there and am now 30 years old. I just want to say to those of you in your tenties just to loosen u a little, do yourselves a favour. These are the years to try stuff, make mistakes, make the same mistakes again and again if you have to. Don’t fear failure so much and try not to feel all this societal pressure to feel and be someone and something that you ought to be. Be yourselves, if you like get a job in a cafe, bar, restraunt for a bit and conne t with people, serve and make others happy. Theres nothing wrong with being a drifter and having lots of different jobs. I have been on minimum wage jobs for ten years in bars and cafes and I HATE IT, HATE IT, HATE IT… but i have been doing it for so long that I lack the confidence to do anything else, I feel suicidal sometimes and have deep savage depressions lasting for years. Hay ho thats the way it goes, I have dislocated myself from my friends and and started over so many times i have lost count. Thats my life, you make some decisions and they are with you but you can change. We are so lucky to haver lived and been educated in the Western world. Imagine for one second tarding your life for someone in sub suharan Africa or India where life is so much harder.
I have nothing figured out but for the younger ones you have so much time, don’t pressure yourselves so much, you will eat yourselves up. I seriously recommend exercize as much as you can, it has saved my life seriously, read, walk, get on a bike and just cruise around with no direction. Help people, help an old lady cross the street, hold doors open for people, don’t just tell a stranger the direction to a place, walk them there yourselves whilst you carry their bags. These little things hel yourself and others and just makes peoples days a little less shit.
Just understand you are what you are, I know so many people who are succesful at work and seem to have it all but are overweight or bold from the stress, and I seriously recommend get out and about in the sun and enjoy the days.
I know its so hard feeling useless and not using your education like me. Like the housewife from earlier its been so long since I used my brain its almost a dormant organ waiting to be reignited again.
We are still in a global kick ass recession and the peolple in the soup kitchens from the 30’s depression got on with stuff as did the holocasut survivors. We all have change in our lives. Anyone in England or Europe if you feel your life is SHIT pack some shit and move to BRIGHTON. Get a job and start over. It was the best thing I ever did!

Thanks guys, stay strong!

#40 sangeeta lama on 18, May, 2011 at 3:57 am

iv still in my mind…what should i do wid my life?

#41 Art on 24, Jan, 2012 at 8:42 pm

I never equated a good career with being happy at all. A career, like a relationship, can make you miserable but there is no guarantee of happiness as a result. I was told this by my mom in my early teens and somehow it stuck with me. I think the past few decades have produced generations of people who believe that your main source of happiness comes from the work you do. Not to say this isn’t true for some people, but I hardly think an occupation is what will determined your happiness most. Those who have “dream jobs” are lucky to find an occupation that happens to be exactly what they enjoy most. The problem is that most enjoyable activities are not workable as jobs. So this perfect scenario will not come about for most people. Sometimes a job just pays the bills, nothing wrong with that.

Figuring out what to do with ones life is still an important question but I think it is a mistake to limit the answers to the types of jobs one can do. Happiness is an attitude, an outlook not a profession. I say find a way to spend most of your free time doing what you love, whatever that may be. if you truly love it then the money wont matter. For some it might be relationships, family, travel, writing, teaching, fishing etc. A buddy of mine loved snowboarding so much he wanted to do it every day, so he relocated close to a large ski resort and got work locally. not his dream profession but he can go boarding pretty much whenever he wants. Now he works with ski rescue. He did what he loved and everything else worked out.

#42 Overactive Brain on 30, Jan, 2012 at 4:28 pm

OMG I’m so glad I found this article with all the comments! It’s so heart-warming to read from the souls of so many lost people.

My story is that, I knew what I wanted but somehow it hasn’t been working out so lately I got so confused that I don’t even know anymore… It has been very depressing (due to other events, too) that internet has become my only salvation. I’m 26 living alone feeling stuck and my only close relative is far far away. I lost friends, they all moved or got married, I still haven’t found a person to love and am unemployed in a country where people are frequently rude and there’re so few places to go. It is cold in so many senses. And I am friendly but sadly I’ve experienced that most people tend to notice me only when I’m successful. Suddenly they become “friends”. Suddenly they message me, they put a smile on. That also puts a lot of stress on to become successful and not to feel worthless.

All I wanted from when I was 11, I guess, was to have a band. Later I realized I would love to travel the whole World. In those 15 years I haven’t found a single person here in my country who would want to create a band w/me. They all were promising but in the end I realized they weren’t really serious. I had to do everything myself and, well, I’m not a superman. Then I tried all that different stuff cause I have LOTS of hobbies and am very eager to try and learn EVERYTHING. Failed at some things and lost confidence. I simply lost myself and my ADD + OCD really aren’t much of a help. I’m very creative and probably sometimes lose touch w/reality. Thanks to this page – it gives me hope and determination to actually go and do stuff, and organize my inner mess! One thing at a time! To fully live it.

Hope my story will be useful to someone out there, I wish you all best of luck. I still do not know what my steps should be to turn my dreams into goals and reach them. Due to so many failures it seems impossible, I need help! I need a coordinator!!

4now I say 2myself: “No worries mate, all is good”.

Peace \m/

#43 Michael Hoffman on 26, Jun, 2012 at 9:07 pm

what if what makes me happiest is watching tv and movies all day? i don’t want to be anything. i have seeked help back when i was in high school and into my 20’s and into my 30’s and now i am 42. i am on disability for depression since i am unable to support myself. the thing is, there is no help. no one can or wants to help those who can’t figure out their life or who are unable to fix their life. i don’t know what to do. mental hospitals can only keep me locked up for so long. they don’t want to let me stay there forever, although i have asked them if i could.

#44 Arthur on 04, Jun, 2013 at 1:32 am

I’m deflating. Been staring into the abyss for a few days now.

Short of telling a life story, I’m 27, have two kids, and starting my 2nd year of college this fall. General Studies cause I don’t know wtf to do. Minimum wage jobs aren’t getting us ahead, so my mom gave us a place to live while I go to school. Everyone says go to school, go to school.

I wanted to be a rock star as a kid, and tried my best at that from 17-22/23 ish. Now I’ve got a 4.0 in general studies. Wtf.

I’ve got business ideas but no capitol to invest, and no job prospects that would help build said funds. Nothing else looks interesting. Spinning a job wheel would give just as good results.


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