Patel: Trust yourself to make your own decisions


Meera Patel, Columnist

If there’s anything I’ve learned over the past year, it’s that even when you have no idea what you’re doing, you have to learn to fake it until you make it. You will have to make decisions throughout your life; make the ones that you need to before someone else makes them for you.

What keeps us from making decisions? What keeps us from doing what our gut tells us to do is the feeling that we don’t know what is best for ourselves?

One of my friends decided to drop a major because she realized it wasn’t necessary. When she talked to her father about it, he told her she had made a huge mistake. After that conversation, she felt terrible about her decision, even though she had felt so good about it before.

You’re the person living your life. If you’re a Northwestern student, you’re probably around 20 years old; you’ve been around enough to know what you need to do for you, even if you aren’t completely sure of what you’re doing. And you’re going to be the one dealing with the consequences of your own actions.

In regards to the job, if you don’t have that double major, is it really going to make or break your job opportunities in the future? Maybe for your first job, but after that, you’re being hired because of your experiences. Your majors from college won’t make that much of a difference; most skill sets you learn on the job.

It’s really easy to fall into the trap of doubting how well you can make your own decisions. If you think about all the times you’ve made mistakes because you made the wrong calls, you may think that you are not the best person to be in charge of your future.

Well, guess who is in charge of your future. You.

Sometimes you have to make calls that you aren’t sure of, but you know are necessary. After you make those decisions, it’s important to stick to them and be confident in knowing that you made the right choice at the right time.

We all make mistakes; there are times when you wish you hadn’t made a choice that you did. In this case, you have two options. You can wallow in the past and think about all the things you could have or would have done, or you can accept that what happened occurred and move on. You can’t change the past; recognize when it’s necessary to let go.

A couple of nights ago, one of my friends said she believes that everything in her life happens because it’s what she needs to happen at that time. It’s been a while since I’ve thought about what’s supposedly meant to happen. I’d stopped believing in that type of thing a while ago. But if you think about it, there’s really no other way to look at life. Life isn’t only about everything that happens to you, it’s about the way you handle yourself through it all. The events that are happening to you right now are happening for a reason. You’re going to learn from every experience that you have and grow as a person throughout your life.

Meera Patel is a McCormick junior. She can be reached at [email protected]. If you would like to respond publicly to this column, send a Letter to the Editor to [email protected].