#Blogtober Day 5: When I grow up…

October 5, 2016

Day five of Blogtober is all about the career that I had planned for myself, as a child. When I was at school, high school particularly (because no one seemed bothered at junior school), I had a reputation as being a massive geek. I think the ‘popular’ kids thought I spent my whole life with my head in a book.

I’m not entirely sure what gave them this impression (okay, maybe I was a bit of a know-it-all) but it couldn’t have been further from the truth. My dad even asked me on GCSE results day to think of how well I could have done if I’d actually done some work. I pointed out that I’d done well enough without the bother so I’m glad I hadn’t wasted the energy (Gosh, I must have been an irritating teenager!).

Anyway, throughout high school I had always believed that I was going to be a career woman. I was adamant that I didn’t want children (ahem) and would be a highly driven and successful barrister.


Yep, barrister. I did go through a brief phase of wanted to be a forensic pathologist (I think I actually wanted to be Dana Scully) but that was short-lived when I actually thought about what the job would entail…

No, barrister seemed to be a sufficiently high-powered and successful vocation, and I had visions of using my vast intelligence and razor-sharp thinking skills (ahem) to deal with tricky customers in the dock. Not to mention the power dressing. I would be widely respected throughout the profession as the representation to have if you wanted to win your case. Gosh, I really had thought it through, hadn’t I?

Well it turns out, not so much. The dream was quashed when my mum took me along to some kind of careers event and we listened to a talk from a solicitor who shared the exceptionally long hours she worked and explained that law wasn’t necessarily the glamorous career people thought it was.

Bubble. Burst.

So, I did a huge turnaround and decided that I was going to take A-levels that I would enjoy, without worrying about what job I was going to have at the end of it (maybe not the best idea!). I found a love of Psychology and ended up with a degree in that. By the end of it, though, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do and went to see the university careers advisor in the hope that they’d tell me about some amazing psychology-linked career that I hadn’t considered before.

Unfortunately I think they were the least well-researched careers advisor on the planet, and asked me if I’d considered teaching…


5 responses to “#Blogtober Day 5: When I grow up…”

  1. Haha! As a now qualified solicitor, you definitely dodged a bullet. Being a barrister is super stressful (and sometimes not that rewarding) so I’m glad you did something that you enjoyed! My careers advisor told me not to do an A Level in Law if I wanted to do a degree in it. It made no sense, so I ignored her! #Blogtober16

    • Jules says:

      I ended up leaving teaching full time due to stress anyway, but I think as a perfectionist it would have happened regardless of the profession I chose as I put far too much pressure on myself.

  2. Anne says:

    I too have a psychology degree that I’ve done nothing with. I think it’s the extra work you have to put in after your degree that’s a little off putting. I also believe that Dana Scully must have had a lot of young people aspiring to be a forensic pathologist! Being a Barrister is an amazing aspiration, but yes, such hard work.

    • Jules says:

      Yes, I decided I didn’t want to wait until I was 30 to earn a decent wage! Teaching wasn’t really an easy option, though!

  3. Sarah HP says:

    Oh that’s a shame that reality stomped on your dream. My best friend was a corporate lawyer and did indeed work incredibly long hours (it made her leave in the end). I did psychology A-Level and did find it fascinating. I think doing what enjoy is the way to go. I’m still trying to find a way to make a living from doing something that I love.

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