I'm open to suggestions

June 22, 2009

One of my sophomore roommates in college said that I’m “open to suggestions,” which is something that has stuck with me because the truth of it was undeniable.

In college, it was true because I would prioritize doing something fun over schoolwork (who didn’t), even though I worked enough that I didn’t have a lot of time for screwing around. Ask if I wanted to do something, and the answer was “yes.” Still is.

I’ve always thought of it as pertaining only to fun things that friends suggest, but recently, I’ve started to consider: have I always taken the path of least resistance? Have I truly made any significant decisions in my life?

Looking back on the college application process in high school, I don’t feel like I prepared well for it. Up until everyone else started applying to colleges, I had no idea what I was going to do after high school. There was only a vague possibility of going to college, and those chances were so remote that I only applied to three schools. I was accepted at two of them, and I went to the better of the two. No decision there.

Law school too. Sure, I took steps to take the LSAT and apply to a few schools, but it was because I was only partially employed at the time that any of that came to pass. Going to law school seemed like a better idea than sitting on the couch for another year or two. It doesn’t feel like it was a real choice.

Every job that I’ve ever taken was because I knew someone who put my resume in; they didn’t necessarily “get me the job,” but it undoubtedly smoothed the application process.

After I had this realization about myself, it occurred to me that it’s probably human nature to take the path of least resistance. Choices that we think we have, we don’t. Everyone does this all the time without thinking about it. When we do think back upon it, we can see it.

What’s the most significant non-decision you’ve made?

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One Response to “ I'm open to suggestions ”

  1. revisingproust on June 23, 2009 at 6:01 pm

    Should it be a lesson that your non-decision about law school has lead you to become a non-practicing attorney?

    I say that because the same thing happened to me. My parents never wanted me to become a writer. They wanted me to go to law school.

    And, here I am now. Writing for nonpretentious.

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