Shoutout to all 9th graders who are about to make their first major life decision — choosing the right strand for you. The K to 12 system is meant to empower Filipinos to be on top of their own future as it inadvertently encourages the youth to become active participants in their own lives by making decisions for themselves.
But before you do, here are a few things you might want to keep in mind!
Play on your strengths
Everyone has something or some things they are good at. Take the time to reflect and know yourself a little better. What are you good at? What do people ask help from you for? What do people praise you for? What do you get excited doing?
You don’t have to have all the answers on the very first time. Let it come to you. Just take a few minutes a day to try to observe how you feel about certain things.
When it comes to choosing the right strand for you, remember to play on your strengths. The strand you choose will be the skills and knowledge you’r learning will be focused on for the next 3 years so it’ll be wise to actually like what you get yourself into.
Get second opinions
..or third or fourth or fifth opinions, too! Tbh asking for multiple opinions can only give you a wider perspective on the decision you’re about to make. The only tricky part is knowing who to ask for opinions. While having more opinions give you more options to consider, relevant and valuable opinions only come from people who spend a lot of time with you and who actually care about you.
Asking for the opinion of someone you just met might even be counterproductive as they might not know what to tell you or worse — make something up to get the conversation over with!
When you ask for external opinions, consider asking about the possible career opportunities in different fields and observe how you feel about exploring them.
You are allowed to change your mind
I know we said that this is the first major decision you are about to make but before you get into analysis paralysis or over thinking..
Remember: You are allowed to change your mind.
Nothing in life is ever set in stone – your career, included! This is just the starting point of the rest of your life. What you want today can change in a month or a year. What you believe in now can be influenced by other experiences in the future – but that shouldn’t stop you from trying anyway!
Life is an ever-evolving adventure and you shouldn’t be afraid to take chances. Whatever strand you decide to take, for as long as your heart is 100% in it then go for gold! Because whether or not it turns out to be your educational “end game” or “the one,” one thing is for sure — you can only get to know yourself even more by the decision you make.