Good evening.

Today i was reading trough a blog post, which cited Hunter S. Thompson, and this made me think:

"As I see it then, the formula runs something like this: a man must choose a path which will let his ABILITIES function at maximum efficiency toward the gratification of his DESIRES. In doing this, he is fulfilling a need (giving himself identity by functioning in a set pattern toward a set goal) he avoids frustrating his potential (choosing a path which puts no limit on his self-development), and he avoids the terror of seeing his goal wilt or lose its charm as he draws closer to it (rather than bending himself to meet the demands of that which he seeks, he has bent his goal to conform to his own abilities and desires).

In short, he has not dedicated his life to reaching a pre-defined goal, but he has rather chosen a way of life he KNOWS he will enjoy. The goal is absolutely secondary: it is the functioning toward the goal which is important. And it seems almost ridiculous to say that a man MUST function in a pattern of his own choosing; for to let another man define your own goals is to give up one of the most meaningful aspects of life — the definitive act of will which makes a man an individual. "

-Hunter S. Thompson.

Now that's why it made me think, because i think what he said is reasonable: I'm now doing school again to get an higher degree than i have allready, because everybody is saying that you need it to get a good job. Also you need it to go to university.

I want to finish this school, but because this one is still pretty basic teaching, it is not really sharpening the skills you are good at and enjoy, but makes you know the same stuff as everybody else.

If somebody is doing a education like an internship to qualify himself to work in a certain area (I'm sorry if i may have not the right word at hand, i don't know how it is called in english), he is upgrading his skills to what he enjoys to do. IF he is lucky enough to get an job in a field he enjoys.

Now my question to everybody is, what do you think about going your own way, and how did you do it? How far should Hunter S. Thompson's advice apply to a mans life?

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I know that my post-secondary schooling (both paths I tried) included an internship of sorts. In the end, it really boils down to finding what suits your strengths, your personality, and your goals (which will be in flux until they are achieved, I.E a moving target). Another great man said "Find a job you love and you won't work a day in your life." I would extend that to education as well. I struggled terribly when I was studying to be a teacher; I loved literature (and still do), but the practical necessities of teaching it got in the way of my enjoying it. When I went to paramedic school, I literally slept through the classroom lecture (I was exhausted from the extensive associated internship), and graduated Magna cum Laude. I just seemed to know the material in my bones, and that made the exams and classwork ridiculously easy (in contrast, 70% of the class that started with me dropped out within two years. Guess it was just too hard). Find your strengths and your interests, then go with the flow.

By the way, I just saw where you are located. Please pardon my diction- It's been a few years, and I may be a little rusty. Ahem...

Wilkommen zu AoM! Vie viele jahren bist du? Nicht viele, ich vergesse. Ja, ich spreche ein bisschen Deutsch, aber nur ein bisschen. Ich habe Deutsche gelernt aus gymnasium, fur vier jahre.

I'm sure that was laughable (if it was understandable at all), but all I've used it for since high school was understanding Rammstein lyrics. Hope you got a laugh out of that.

Haha vielen Dank, this cheered me up! Sure it wasn't perfect German but i did understand everything. I don't know how to put it into words but i really appreciate you took your time to make that comment. Also your first one, i'm kinda without direction right now and have lost all hope to not drop out. So thank you for putting a smile on my face haha.

Any time I can get someone to laugh, that's a victory in my book. I'm a bit more fluent in Spanish, but I use that much more often. In terms of looking for a direction, sit down and go over your strengths. Part of my German classes was learning a bit about how the educational system there works, but our textbooks were outdated (there was a top-ten music chart with "99 Luftbaloons" in it). I do know that the European system allows for a bit more specialization and individual determination than the American system. Are you good at math, do you enjoy literature, do you enjoy leading a class or giving presentations? You may be well suited to angle yourself towards a career in teaching. Do you enjoy helping people, serving others, or place job satisfaction over financial gain? Then a career in health care or human services may be to your liking. There are myriad online quizzes that can help give you some ideas based on your answers to personality and interest questions, and these are often also available through your school. Based on your responses, your picture, and your question, I'm going to guess you are around 15-16, what would be a freshman or sophomore in high school (in the US). This puts you about two-three years from graduation from your secondary educational institution (deine gymnasium). You still have a little time, but I understand your concern. Like I said, take some time to reflect upon your strengths and interests, then do some research how they could work for you. Hope this helps.

Thanks for the response, nice someone actually tries to help out.

I'm interested in literature, art, and i like to help people. Stupid mix. So i guess i will keep the first two as a hobby.

My problem right now is that (bavaria is the only part of germany still having 3 kinds of school)i started in gymnasium, dropped down to the lower one, because i didn't know how to properly learn. I graduated there, moved up to the middle on, graduated there too and now i'm at gymnasium again. Well and that's where i am failing right now. And basically without that i can't do anything.

And yes it defeinitly helps.

Well, take stock of your skills. What are you good at? Do you do any activities outside the classroom? Athletics, arts, public service organizations (the Boy Scouts spring to mind, but I am unaware if there is an equivalent organization in Germany). It may seem small, but sometimes the small things are what will show you the way. For example: I was in Boy Scouts from the age of 6 to age 20. My decision to become a paramedic was a fluid extension of the first aid and emergency preparedness skills I learned in the BSA. I've always enjoyed and had a talent for singing. I paid for paramedic school with a scholarship for singing in the college choir. If something interests you, run with it and see where it leads.

Literature, art, and charity...
Maybe teaching or art therapy...

Those words were powerful and pretty much summed up how I feel. Instead of going to university/college, I want to go on a one year cycle ride, around Europe and Africa. At the chagrin of my family, who want me to go straight to a university, they see most pertinent. I am not even sure if I want to go to university, but my trip should give me ample time to think, in which I hope to get a greater perspective and have an understand of what I want to do.

So you can do the trip now? Sounds like an awesome plan! Where will you tour around in Europe? 

I thought about doing something like this too...maybe peace corps (if something like this exists here) or i don't know.

Being that I can be a beef-witted mammary gland, I left highschool when I was 16 so I could have a fulltime labour job with the local golf course. I was pulling down up to 51 hours a week, running machinery, working in all weather conditions (except for torrential rain and lightning) and I am not ashamed to admit that I was down on my knees in the dirt picking my fingers to blood & bone to keep the bunkers pristine. Eventually, I went back to school and wound up playing catch-up, only to leave again for another f/t job.  Did I think it was best for me at the time? Hell yes. I had no direction, and I woulda rathered dipped my bag in a deep fryer than stayed in school another minute, and I was making good money for a 16yo.  When all my classmates were graduating and going to college did I think it was best? Again, yes, because I had a kickass job at the plywood mill, it was a job I took pride in and I got laid after every single shift.


Fast forward, all my friends are almost out of college or doing internships and I'm busting my ass in a warehouse....Now it's not what's best. Now I want to make something of myself. I found a field I wanted to pursue and buckled down...Then I see I can get a BASc in the field I chose, I don't have near the grades that the university requires so I gotta upgrade: Playing catch-up again.  In the interim, I've got a great job as an Industrial First Responder/Security Officer.


What I am alluding to is: There are a hell of a lot more opportunities afforded to one my that little piece of paper you get from the college/university. A highschool diploma doesn't even mean anything anymore. If you can find a job that you enjoy and that pays semi-decent without a college education, more power to you...And if that job is secure and won't lay you off every couple months, awesome.  If you want to be able to afford your dream house, dream car, support a family, you're going to need at minimum 4 years of college.

lol, my friends always told me I would wind up a cautionary tale.


Luckily I smartened-up and am now on the right track.

Never finished my degree at university. In my opinion, it is overrated and not entirely as necessary as most people claim. I have done well financially without it. The five wealthiest families in my life--all with 10 million and up nets worth--did not earn college degrees. Several didn't finish high school. On the other hand, I know several wealthy families whose income is earned off their degrees.

Even if I am wrong, and a degree is the only feasible path to wealth, I would posit these questions: Is wealth your goal in life? Should it be?

If you spend 16 to 18 of your first 22 years being schooled in how to get a job and work for someone else, when and where do you learn to work for yourself? (Add more for a Master's or PhD).

In my opinion, live your life and your dreams, not the life and dreams your parents/culture/teachers/authority figures claim you should want. If your dreams coincide with theirs, fine; if not, equally acceptable.


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