At 26 Years Old, Still Afraid And Clueless...

I graduated college a few years ago, but throughout my school years up to now I could never shake the feeling that I didn't know what I wanted, what I liked, or what I was good at. Career counsellors at my university gave me tons of aptitude/personality/etc tests to help. I noticed after taking each test several times that the results would always change, or that I would disagree with the results. Why am I so indecisive? How can I know so little about myself?

I am so lost. So confused. I've never applied for a job because I'm so embarrassed at my lack of skills and direction. My degree is kind of worthless, because I took the course that my parents wanted me to take and was very unhappy the whole time. I learned very little. Whenever I tried to express this to my teachers and the counsellors they would tell me not to worry, that it was normal to be unsure, and that everything would come together after graduation. Well, that didn't happen! The resulting feelings of shame, inadequacy and frustration are so overwhelming that I can't even face my family and my friends. I pushed them all out of my life because they treat me like I'm overreacting. Pep talks are not enough; they don't understand.

I did volunteer at a couple of local companies/events, but for some reason I always get placed in customer relations type of work. Apparently this is the type of work I'm qualified for "based on my education and background"—but I am so nervous and awkward around people! I'm not a quick thinker; I do badly when I'm put on the spot. So I've always felt terrified and out of place in these experiences.

I don't have any special skills like computer programming, an artistic/musical ability, or ANYTHING to set me apart from the rest. There are no job/employment centers where I live. I have no one to turn to. I just don't know what to do, and I don't think I ever will. I'm a disappointment and burden to everyone. My life has been a waste so far.
bluestripes bluestripes
7 Responses Apr 11, 2011

What did you end up doing friend. It is Dec 2015 now? Did something change

Im in exactly the same boat..I dont even have a direction I wanna go in because I dont know what it would be..It sounds bad but I have no idea what im good at and I have no idea of what I want to do..I bounce from job to job and can rarley make.ends meet..Iwould at least like a direction to go in..something to start with

Where do u stand now? I wish to know cuz im 26 and i relate to ur post a 100%. but i want to know whether things got better for u...

im in the same boat. idk what to do! im trying to keep myself going everyday. but with no job no relationship and barely a social life im getting worse and worse

Man, don't give up! Do you know how many applications I turned in and I never got an interview? Too many to count! Please, don't let this fear hold you back. You still completed a college education. I failed on my first semester and can't go back unless I pay (and I don't have any money). So, give yourself credit and keep trying! :)

Thanks for the encouragement, it means a lot.

I am hear reading what you have posted and I am in the same situation; the only difference is that I did not get a college degree. I have been in the restaurant business for over 24 years and always in the back of my head thinking what am I supposed to do with my life. What’s my purpose I am so confused and I am a lot older then you over 20 years. Please don’t give up. I am convinced that there is something out there for you. My son is 25 and is still in college he had the same feelings and I told him that you have to try everything out there till you find something that you love to do remember that you have to enjoy it first before the money because sometimes the pay is not worth the sad day of saying I don’t want to go to work. He has taken a different approach and said that was the best thing I could have told him he try's everything and said he understands what I was telling him. You are young and have so much to offer other people out there. There is older people that cannot compete with you and your degree you can help them by teaching what you know and applying it to them. You will be surprised the gift you have. Please do not quit or give up keep trying you will make it. Sometimes you don’t want to hear anyone because you feel they just don’t get it, but go to your mom she will not let you down, she will help and help her understand what you’re going through and you will be surprised. You take care and hope things go very well for you. God Bless you always.

Thanks for your kind words.

To update on my story a little bit...<br />
<br />
I finally got a resume together and started applying for jobs. Had my first interview today. <br />
The company sounded really cool and I was interested in what they do, so that was a plus. <br />
<br />
I went in feeling prepared, tried to be positive, but within a few minutes it all fell apart. Completely butchered. All my worst fears came true. And I don't know where to go from here, because I keep getting the impression from people who look at my resume that I am over or under-qualified for everything. No one is interested in hiring me.

You just need to find that spark that motivates you in life. Don't assume that you need an education to get your ideal job. The job could be as simple as fishing! Only you know what you like to do.<br />
<br />
Find something you like and try to make a career out of it. Like I said, it doesn't have to pay well or anything. It's something you like to do in life. <br />
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Live the life you want to, don't let others interfere.