Life lessons

The Alternate Career

N and I went to see Akmal Saleh’s stand-up comedy last night after I won a couple of tickets to the show. After the show, we had dinner and just conversed as usual. Both of us are in the same field of work. One of the topics that came up was about alternate careers. If we weren’t psychologists, what would we be?

I remember having a Plan B and a Plan C prior to coming to Australia…in case my dreams of doing postgraduate psychology didn’t work out. Plan B was to become a teacher. An English teacher to be precise. Especially given my love for the language [and some would argue, how pedantic I can be!] Plan C was completely unrelated. It was to get a diploma in Personal training. You know…the whole fitness thing. Mind you, this was at a time when I was going to the gym and loving it back in India. A time when I didn’t have to cook dinner for myself or do any of that and hence had enough energy for the gym!

N however wanted to know what I would do in an ideal world. If I didn’t have to worry about money or needing a job that paid well. And I guess with that, my alternate career would have been a writer. Yes…a writer. I know I love to write. And keeping this blog is part of that. I don’t always have to write something creative but when I do, I know it’s deeply personal. There is something so gratifying about being able to put down your thoughts on paper. Whether it is your opinion or just letting those creative juices take form.

Apart from being a writer, another ideal career would be owning a bookstore. My very own bookstore. Sort of like the one Meg Ryan owns in ‘You’ve got mail’. Imagine that! I would probably be reading all the books prior to selling them. It would be my land of dreams!

Despite dreaming of these alternate careers, I must admit, I love my chosen career path. Yes, I have my days. But most of the time, I love the work I do. And who’s to say I can’t do the whole writing thing simultaneously? [Yeah, I like to dream sometimes!]

So what about you my dear readers? 

If money was no bar and education wasn’t an issue, is there a dream career for you? Do share…

Until next time,


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  • Richa
    23 January 2012 at 10:54 am

    I would have been a painter or a photographer or may be both. Although I must say, I would have missed being a Geophysicist. No matter how much I love photography and beauty of nature etc., I still crave for intellectual/mathematical side of my life. I guess my ideal career choice given money was no bar: part time Geophysicist, part time photographer…

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 12:20 am

      Photography would be nice…and you would make a good one! I am with you though…I don’t think I could have given up on psychology…I do enjoy my work more often than not and love the challenge that it brings! But a part-time blend of two worlds sounds perfect!

    23 January 2012 at 10:57 am

    Long time back, a good friend of mine asked me … What if 1000 euros were deposited each month to your account without question. Would you still do what you were doing or would you do something different in life ? Archeology was the first thing that came to my mind back then.
    When thinking about it more deeply, I found many people around me crushing their dreams, destroying their passions just to make a living doing monotonous jobs due to monetary and social pressures. I think if this world was free of money, it would have been a more developed and self sustainable world. Just like what Jacque Fresco proposes in his Venus Project.

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 12:26 am

      Archaeology would have been interesting I reckon! I know what you mean when you talk about people repressing their passions and dreams thanks to monetary and societal pressures…I have friends from school who did what most people were doing after the 10th which was getting into Science and then doing engineering. Now some of them do love what they are doing but there are others who are just doing it because it’s a job and they have to. One friend in particular hates having to sit in front of a computer most of the day especially as she is such a people-person but is too scared to try anything else! It’s sad especially when we spend half our lives working!

  • Spaceman Spiff
    23 January 2012 at 11:31 am

    Oh wow! This is so freaky! You and I share the same dream-career, if money wasn’t a barrier. 1)Full-time writer, who doesn’t have to worry about deadlines, but can write whenevr I want to. 2) Own my bookstore, a tiny, cozy little one, where people can come and sit and read. I will do this some day.

    Other than that… I want to be a professional voice-over artist, especially for animation features.

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 9:16 am

      Totally agree Spiffy about the no deadlines! Ooh…and professional voice-over artist…that would be cool! I’m now curious to hear your voice! 🙂

  • Lazy Pineapple
    23 January 2012 at 11:38 am

    Well we seem to share the same dream career. For so long I wanted to be a book store owner just like Meg Ryan. Thankfully I can call myself a writer now…I have stumbled upon this passion after doing many different jobs.

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 9:43 am

      You are a published writer LP and that must be an amazing feeling!! And it’s interesting how many of us share that and the bookstore dream!

  • Kunal
    23 January 2012 at 12:05 pm

    Screenplay Writer. 😀
    And I have not given up on that…yet 😉

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 9:51 am

      Sounds good Kunal…looking forward to seeing one of your screenplays produced when you do achieve that dream! 🙂

  • writerzblock
    23 January 2012 at 1:23 pm

    The moment I read ‘bookstore’ I thought of Meg Ryan’s corner book store 🙂 And then ofcourse of Hugh grant’s store in Notting Hill 🙂

    Btw, I would have opened up a huge toy store or book store too, I think.

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 10:00 am

      HAven’t seen Notting Hill Writerzblock…but it’s interesting to see how many people have seen You’ve got mail and long for that bookstore! And it’s amazing how many of us want to open a bookstore! 😀

  • Maddie
    23 January 2012 at 2:46 pm

    I would have loved to study psychology, perhaps hypnotherapy too. In school I wanted to be a dog carer or a dog sitter. I just love those animals. Once I started reading I wanted to be Meg Ryan like you said. Just image, a cozy little shop, all those books and the crisp smell of the brand new pages. :)) If I stretch my fantasy a little more – I would have loved to be on the Discovery channel travelling through beautiful locations 🙂

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 10:30 am

      Psych, huh? 🙂 Oh…would love to be a dog-sitter too! And when I was younger, I did think about the travel show host…similar to Discovery channel I suppose!

  • Roshan
    23 January 2012 at 4:58 pm

    I’d love to own & run a bookstore like The Little shop Around the corner or even a big chain store like Fox Books. Or music & movie cds, dvds, blu rays. The collest ones around.

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 10:31 am

      Ah a similar dream…I’m amazed Roshan at how many of us seem to have that dream to own a bookstore!

  • memoriesandmirages
    23 January 2012 at 5:40 pm

    Ahhh, a bookstore. I love that idea! Would love to have one of my own too.

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 10:32 am

      Join the club T! Looks like there are many of us wih that dream…if only we could really do it! IT would be amazing!

  • Anonymous
    24 January 2012 at 3:18 am

    I still keep thinking about my backup career. I’m OK at a lot of things, but I guess I’m not great at any – I’m certain they wouldn’t pay my bills given my skill level.

    • Psych Babbler™
      24 January 2012 at 10:33 am

      I don’t think you need to be great at anything to have a dream career Anonymous…it could be something you just love! 😀

  • smokinglife
    27 January 2012 at 7:03 am

    If I would have the monetary funds and the opportunity, then I would have loved to take up Psychology as my career and also, become a full-time Writer 🙂

    • Psych Babbler™
      22 February 2012 at 11:00 pm

      That’s interesting Smokinglife…Psych is a good career and even though I’ve written this, I continue to love what I do! 🙂

  • Arjun
    27 January 2012 at 11:11 pm

    I would probably have become the lead singer of a band.. or maybe a life guard.. 🙂

    • Psych Babbler™
      22 February 2012 at 11:01 pm

      Sounds fun Arjun! Lifeguard would be cool…always by the beach…

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