To Shift or Not to Shift? Advice from a Shiftee

Gaile Teves
| | 3 min read

There are many decisions in life that we have to face with a very large impact on the trajectory of our future. One of these decisions is choosing a course for college.

Sometimes in the course of our schooling we have certain doubts about our decision. It’s a big deal, choosing what you’re going to focus on for at least four years of your life and possibly pursuing a career within the field.

If you’re reading this article, you’re having second thoughts about the course you’re in and considering shifting to another program. And that’s okay.

If you’re considering changing your path for the rest of your academic life, here are points to think about for you to assess your situation and come to the right mindset when making this decision.

Why are you thinking about shifting your major?

If you are feeling doubtful about your capabilities because of a few bad scores or you feel that the course you’re in is too difficult, that is not enough of a reason to change your field of study. All courses have their own nuances and they are difficult in their own way.

If you just want an easy way through college just to get your degree, you have the wrong idea. The point of choosing a course in college is to attain a level of knowledge and mastery in a certain field. You will inevitably go through some difficulties, and it is up to you to choose what course would be worth going through these difficulties.

Before you change your major, you need to assess the real reasons. Why are you thinking about shifting to another course? Are you unhappy with this course? Was this your choice? Do the struggles you face not feel worth it for your degree in the future?

What are the sources of your hesitations?

Are you afraid of being away from the friends you have made in the course that you’re in? Do you hesitate because of the possibility of being delayed from graduation? These are legitimate concerns, but you should remember, what are you studying for?

You want to get a degree in a field that feels like it’s worth the effort; not the one where your friends are or where you graduate on time. There is no shame in graduating a little bit behind schedule, as long as you are satisfied with where you are going in life.

Are you hesitating because the ones supporting your education are against it? This is a little bit trickier to work out. Make sure to have a good discussion about your future, and your plans.

It is important that you communicate well your wants and needs, and understand their side as well. Hopefully you can come to an understanding and meet at a common ground where everyone is satisfied.

In the future, do you see yourself working in the field you’re studying?

This is an important question to ask yourself. At the end of the day, your course is a stepping stone to your future career. You need to reflect on where this will take you in the future, not only for the coming years of study, but after you graduate.

Is this course something you are interested in?

Reflect how much you care about your course. Even if things could get difficult, what makes it all worth it is the dedication you have to pursue this field of study. It is what you are to focus on for four years of your life.

Before you decide to shift, you need to understand what you deem as worth your while.

What is your goal after graduation?

How do you envision yourself right after you get your degree. Are you happy with the course you took? Do you think it will feel worth? Would you feel satisfied with the degree you plan to shift to or with the one you’re taking now?

Where do you hope to be in 10 years? Will shifting majors help you get there?

You shouldn’t only focus on the near future, but your long term goals as well. Picture yourself several years from now, and think about what would lead you to that version of yourself. Do you think you need to shift to get there? Is it what you really want?

Now that you’ve reflected upon these factors, maybe you are closer to making a decision about your dilemma.

Whatever it is, make sure that your future self is happy with your choice. 🙂

Gaile Teves

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