- 3 years ago
- Wedding: May 2019
I just finished my first semester of my masters in social work program. I have been on winter break for one week, and I am heavily considering not going back. Things are going fine at school, I got all As in my first semester, but I just feel that I’m not on the right track.
Some background: I graduated college three years ago, and all of my jobs have been in human services. I did case management for teen moms for a year, and then spent two years working in disability services. Right before school, I transitioned to work at a group home, and do two 20 hour sleep shifts. This allows me to have full time hours, benefits, and I still get 5 days off so I attend school full time. The pay is low, but it is enough to support myself.
I used to teach yoga on the side and coach lacrosse, and absolutely loved it, and wanted to get certified in personal and group fitness, and explore Pilates teaching as well, but I never did because i didn’t have time on top of my full time job. I have had opportunities to help create a curriculum for a yoga teacher training program, and get involved in the wellness outreach at one of my yoga studios, but again, i didn’t pursue them because I didn’t have time on top of my job, and I knew that my career would only get more demanding if I continued with it, and I didnt’ want to fall in love with something I’d eventually have to give up.
Recently, I really wish I had taken these opportunities. Now that I work two days a week, and can pay the bills on that, I want to go back and pursue opportunties like that. That sort of stuff made me so much happier than my social services jobs, and I have a gut feeling that I wont’ be happy as a social worker.
Reasons to quit grad school and pursue a fitness career:
1) I have ADHD, and totally rely on medication to be successful in school and in a “normal” job. I hate that. Teaching yoga and fitness training were more suited to the way my brain worked, and I didn’t feel like I was trying to put forth strengths that I just dont have. There is a lot of energy in a fitness career, so it keeps me engaged and I don’t need my meds when I am teaching. It feels like my brain is taking a break.
2) I really value my own health and wellness, and am sensitive to the level of stress in social work. As far as I’ve seen, the mental health and safety of social workers can easily be put at risk. In class we’ve talked about how to prevent burnout have been terrifying and enough to make me want to run. I KNOW i am susceptible to burnout.
3) I feel drained when I come home rather than energized.
4) Finishing this program would cost me 30,000 more dollars and I already have 35,000 in student debt.
Reasons to push through:
1) I’ll have a masters to fall back on, and there are many jobs I am qualified for with an MSW.
2) Money sunk….
3) Pressure from family to finish and have a “normal” job
4) Not sure how well I could support myself on a fitness career, and I know that furthering my human services career is a more logical option.
I think I know in my heart what to do, but I just want to hear that its okay to make this transition. Bonus points if you have done something similar. For reference, I am only 25 and know that I can always go back to grad school if my fitness career fails.