When I was in high school, I wanted to be a farmer. I still do, but not in the conventional sense. I recollect in my last year of high school, some of the guys were asking other students their desired profession. I remember giving my answer and the other students being incredulous. Why? At the time I couldn't put a definite answer on it, but I wanted to do it, not traditional farming but automated farming.
Yesterday in a lecture, I told my students why they should choose Mathematics or Science based courses to study. I articulated that Mathematics is a subject that you can prove yourself to be right; it is an objective subject. I recall in my final year of undergrad, I got a failing grade on an exam. I knew this couldn't be. I knew everything on the subject like the back of my hand. I went to the lecturer and showed him that the program that I wrote on the exam paper if you enter it into the computer it would compile and run, perfectly. He changed my grade to 100%. I could never do this for subjects like Literature or English which are subjective, where if I didn't hold the same opinion or favour of the lecturer I would have failed.
Along the way, I missed my path. I started to do things that requires me to be in the good graces of others, ie popularity contests. What am I talking about? Startups. You need to incur the favor of customers and investors. I tried all my life to avoid popularity contest, but I had slipped up. I started doing stuff that that requires others approval to be successful. It's only in the lecture I began to realise my mistake. I should have stuck with Agriculture(subsistence farming), a field where I don't require others to be successful, and applied modern technology to ease the burdens of the job. Subsistence farming is a field that is objective and doesn't require approval from others, me against nature.
I have added to my cadre of heurtistic: "Avoid Popularity Contests."