So, first of all, I finished the book! Yay, me. It took me longer than I anticipated, not because it was a difficult read, but because there were many distractions interrupting me.
Second, I found the authors of “Undecided” on Twitter (@undecidedbook) and had the opportunity to tweet back and forth them once or twice.
And, finally, to the discussion questions. At the conclusion of the Kelleys’ book they pose 11 multi-part questions. I don’t want to bore or overwhelm my readers with all of my answers, all at once. So, let’s start with questions 1 and 2, and then I’ll go to sleep!
- 1) Are you “undecided” too? What parts of the book resonate most with you?
- 2) Do you find decision-making stressful? Are you plagued by buyer’s remorse? Or non-buyer’s remorse? Have you ever made a decision you thought was monumental but turned out to mean nothing?
I’m definitely undecided! I’ve never been truly satisfied in any job I’ve had. Chooosing to pursue post-secondary education was more my idea than my parents’ choice. Their goal, or rather my grandma’s, goal for my life is that I have a job – no, not that one; no, not that one either. She wanted me to have a job she could approve of that paid me well and offered good benefits.
No one seemed to care very much when I earned my MS degree, and as incredible as it will feel to finish my PhD, it won’t prove anything to anyone. My husband and my friends know how smart I am. If my grandma took notice, maybe, it would be worth it. But, I became her disappointment the day I married my husband. I wonder if she’s still waiting 9 years after the fact to see if I’ll divorce and become her favorite granddaughter again?
But, back to that thought in a moment. There were quite a few sections of the Kelleys’ book that stood out for me. I’m well aware of the mantra told to both boys and girls – “you can be anything you want to be”. At the age of 7, it’s a wow moment. At the age of 33, it’s still a little bit exciting. Certainly, it let’s me know I haven’t exhausted all my options yet! But the wow statement should have come with a dependent clause – “but you have to choose something”. That was the first thing I learned in Undecided, but I think the next two points points are even more powerful. Though not word for word, the authors wrote it is better to have taken a risk and failed than have done nothing and had regret. This is not to say I haven’t taken risks, but the next point made by the Kelleys might sum up why I’m so undecided and frustrated – those who are running toward something are much happier than those who are running from something.
The only happiness I have found in escaping is in finding my wonderful husband of 9 years. Beyond that, I’ve pursued what could be considered worthless education, wasted my dad’s inheritance on trying to be anyone but someone who resembled a family member, and I’ve moved 4 times in the last ten years. Granted that’s better than my stay at some jobs, but it makes me wonder if this “running away” which I thought would be so cleansing has been one of the biggest reasons I’ve been undecided.
Well, I think I’ve answered questions one and two in a round-about way. I’ll tackle the next few when I return.