Just Because You Can Doesn’t Mean You Should


A lot of us are strong-willed, apt people. We have layers and layers of talent and knowledge that make us who we are. If you were me, you’d be that one kid in fifth grade (and now a sophomore in college) that dominated group projects. Because you didn’t want anyone to mess stuff up. And if you mess up, that’s okay, but if someone else is responsible for your B-average, you’re pissed.

I don’t know what this is called, but I’m gonna name it as “don’t let other people do stuff you can do better” syndrome. DLOPDSYCDB for short.

And as I developed this mindset, I forced myself to understand complex material so I could continue doing all the work. I just absorbed complicated formulas and scientific concepts like a sponge. I managed a 4.0 GPA with AP courses every single semester and ranked 4 in my class.

So when I told my mom I didn’t want to go to medical school, she was heartbroken.

Why would I waste all that time spent learning how to balance equations, how to name compounds, how to apply different laws and not be a doctor?

And for a while, I thought the same thing too. But as I continued to learn—not about (ONLINE) AP chemistry, but about myself—I realized, just because I can memorize 101 new things and get pretty god grades, doesn’t mean I should become a doctor.

For starters, school isn’t my best friend. If you Google “I don’t like school,” my website will pop up on the first page. Dead serious.

Related: 8 Reasons People Don’t Like School.

And medical school requires school. Lots and lots of it, especially if you want to specialize afterward.

Becoming a doctor prescribes that you have a passion for not only enduring school but also helping people in different ways.

And don’t get me wrong—I love helping people! But I’m not trying to be all over people’s skins and organs. Or do the boring things that doctors do. You kinda have to want to be a doctor. Or you’ll be indirectly killing people for your lack of passion. And I’m no murderer.

If you’re in the same boat with your mum/dad pressuring you to become a doctor, you’ve got to think about the consequences. Say you bite your tongue and go to medical school. You could fail because you decide to put your health above your grades and go to bed on time and make time for yourself. Look at all that money and time you’ve wasted.

Say you’ve graduated medical school. Now you gotta endure multiple rotations in different hospitals. Say you faint when you see blood the first day. Sheer waste.

But of course, there may be times when your parents know you better than you do. Maybe you excel in everything and now you’re finally a doctor! But you hate your job.

People say do what makes you happy, and happiness is different for everyone. Maybe you hate your job but you love the pay, and so that makes you happy. As long as the pay is motivating you to do your job right every single time and you don’t mind the temporary feelings of boredom/stress/emptiness, then by all means!

My mom gets me with the “you’ll regret this in the future” talk sometimes, but then I imagine myself in the future living a job I know I’ll hate to the satisfaction of my mother who, by that time, will probably be chillin with Jesus.

I’d be doing all this to make my late mother happy…why?

Related: Why I’m not majoring in my passion

I believe this mindset can be applied to anything. Maybe you’re a fellow blogger who wants to design, create newsletters, market, write blog posts, sell products, and network all while already having another job. Once you get big enough, you’ll realize you won’t have the sanity to do everything yourself.

You’ll probably see that your quality is slowly suffering. You’re feeling rushed to write the blog posts or you’re sending in the wrong products.

And if your quality isn’t dissipating, your time surely is. That time you could have used to gain followers on Pinterest could have been used for networking with other people.

Maybe you’re not a blogger, but you’re a hard headed student that wants to do everything for your group. Well, the time it took you to do EVERYONE’S part of the project could have been used to study for that test you have tomorrow which you completely forgot about.

As a student and an entrepreneur, my two favorite verbs are “prioritize” and “delegation.” Frankly, these two words go hand in hand: make time for the things you want to do by telling people to do the things you don’t.

That’s probably not applicable to my situation because I just can’t tell someone to go to medical school for me, but the point is I’m not the one doing the work that I don’t enjoy doing. In elementary school, it was smart of me to take on the workload because I could do it, but now that the medical school prerequisites will be 10 times harder and biting into more of my adult life, I don’t think I should.

In life, you may realize that you are good at a surfeit of things—you’re talented in too many fields. But that does not mean you must act accordingly, especially if you don’t have any burning desire to do so. Don’t incarcerate yourself.

This goes out to all the straight-A college students being pressured into medicine, law, or engineering just because they're smart. This also goes out to all the entrepreneurs that want to do everything themselves instead of allocating for virtual assistance or help in general. Just because we're smart and capable enough to do anything doesn't mean we should.

What are your thoughts?  Do you agree? Is there something you know you’re good at but don’t want to pursue?