You may already have a clear idea of what you would like to do in your adult life; you may have some vague ambitions; or you may not have a clue.
It’s not a bad idea to spend some time thinking about your future.
The most important thing is to keep as many options open as possible!
Even if you don’t think you will want to study a moment longer than you have to, try to do as well as you can in school exams; your plans may change, and you may find it hard to get into a course, or be chosen for a job, without a particular qualification.
If you do have a particular career or course in mind, spend some time finding out what you will need to achieve that aim.
See what you can do to help yourself by
- doing relevant volunteer work
- taking part-time or holiday jobs or doing work experience
- making sure you are studying the right subjects at school or college – see our education pages here
- doing relevant additional courses or classes that might be available
This will help you to find out whether this career or course really is for you; and will help to show your commitment and enthusiasm when you do apply.
Some courses and careers are particularly competitive and you will need to be very determined if you want to get in. You will need to decide if you are prepared to sacrifice some free time in your teenage years – studying harder and for longer hours than your friends, for example, or dedicating all your free time to ballet or music practice – in order to achieve your aim.
Don’t worry if you don’t have any particular course or career in mind. There is plenty else to keep you occupied during your teenage years, and you may suddenly find yourself inspired by a trip to London or watching a film. Writing things down in a diary or notebook can also sometimes help you understand yourself better, and might even lead to a sudden revelation of what you really want to do with your life!
Try to keep an open mind, look out for things you find interesting, talk to friends and friends’ parents – and keep as many options open as possible. You don’t know what will happen in the future and your dream job may not even have been invented yet.
You may also be interested in the following pages: