I’ve decided to give career counseling a go. I’ve been utterly dissatisfied with my museum work lately, and wonder what else I can do for work. I worry that I’m over-niched and underqualified. I got a graduate degree specifically for museum work, and I’ve found almost no satisfaction from my work in collections management, which is what I always thought I wanted to do since undergrad. And those years that I’ve dedicated to museum collections management work have also been an opportunity cost – what other more general, marketable skills and expertise could I have been developing that aren’t as specialized as database admin for museum collections management databases? The things that I think I might be interested in doing I feel I don’t qualify for because I lack experience. Experience I could have been gaining all along if I had taken another path. And yet the experience I do have isn’t adding up to personal, financial, or career satisfaction for me. I think that the things that I enjoy doing (like writing) I don’t know how to transform into something that provides me with an income. And I don’t know how to reshape the career path I’m in. Not to mention I’m pretty certain I’m not interested in figuring it out. I worry that I’ve made poor decisions in taking my last two jobs, but I also know that since I’m limited to the Phoenix area, if I had instead taken available jobs at Starbucks, I would resent that My Better Half got to pursue his career path through graduate school while I toiled away at jobs that required nothing more than a high school diploma. And yet sometimes I think I’d be happier doing that kind of work anyway. (And I’d probably have a 401(k), too).
Sometimes I think it’s too late to correct course and pursue something else, but then I think I’m too young not to try something different. I think I went to graduate school because it was “the next logical step” and failed to explore the options available to me, so I’m taking this as my chance to do that.