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I am originally from Istanbul/Turkey, currently living in Los Angeles.
Ok, I have my bachelors degree from architecture and I graduated from university in 2010.
After my graduation I started working as an architect in an office in Istanbul. It was a 30 people office working on various types of projects. From the first days of my first real job I didnt enjoy it even a bit and I attributed this feeling to being a newbie, after all I was a rookie and this was the times I had to go through. I was applying revisions to existing drawings and cadding bunch of boring stuff, working with people that i couldnt really relate to.
After a while my boss realized my performance wasnt so high and decided to try me in the concept team thinking maybe I would be a better fit there, supposedly I could be more creative and enjoy the profession. At this section of the office I was trascribing the sketches coming from the head designer into Revit or AutoCAD and drawing, playing with 3D models and masses. I was excited about that and he was right, I started enjoying my job better. But that was not enough after a while the whole thing started to feel horrible, I lost all my enthusiasm in short time, started questioning if I have enough passion or interest to keep pursuing architecture as a profession. Because as you guys know very well it takes almost all the time of and it becomes your life. You can not practise architecture from 9-5 and only week days.(at least its what i am led to believe) All these happened in a year and completing my first year in that office I quitted my job.
My personal life was getting a bit complicated too and I had no idea what to do with my life. Got quite depressed and took bunch of medication. Spent a couple of months in dark moods and recovered. Started on a soul search in my own terms. When depressed period was gone I did nothing for 3 months but partying and getting social, talking to people about how i feel towards architecture.
I signed up for a 9 month programme at UCLA extension called global sustainability and came to Los Angeles. It felt really good to get away from my city and I started to clear my head, making new friends and getting small jobs. And I made this a quest for me to discover what my passion is. My thought pattern was "if my job is gonna become my life it has to be something that I am really passionate of and shouldn't feel like work-at least should be bearable.Oh btw I also worked in an architecture office in LA to see that if I can like it better, to see if the problem was my office. Nope it wasn't, I could only take it a month and had to quit. Each day, when i come home I was feeling horrible, let alone having any enthusiasm towards design I was hardly finding any towards life as long as I am locked in front of that computer.
When somebody asked me to describe my problem towards architecture I always said that I dont like being locked in an office, staring at the computer for hours and hours. I am not quite sure if this is my problem but I know for sure that i like doing more physical things but at the same time i like being creative, too. I am in love with skateboarding, have no intentions of making it a career but I think being creative and physical movements in me comes out as that.
I feel like i am waiting for a divine answer which is never gonna come. I think i might enjoy and be good at some field related to design, too.
I have been in LA for more than 2,5 years now and I tried many jobs from working in theatres to selling jewelery at flea markets to working at art galleries to bartending, making films, working with interior designers. Made bunch of friends from all walks of life and its been a crazy journey. But.. There is a huge but! It is getting really frustrating that I still have no clue about what I wanna do with my life.
After being in this whole phase of my life I am feeling a little bit more enthusiastic about architecture and design but it doesnt feel super right.
Anybody has any ideas or has been through the same path? I can really use some advice.
It's called getting your shit together
The more you stay stopped the more you are going to be behind... so take your time but not too much... are you sure this wouldn't happen in any other field? Sign up for boxing classes. People are going to hit you regardless of your inner state. It is the same with life. Maybe you are not appreciating enough what you have. Or maybe Architecture is not you passion. Or maybe it is but you need time to rearrange your personal life.
"if my job is gonna become my life it has to be something that I am really passionate of and shouldn't feel like work-at least should be bearable" - Welcome to the real world!! Work feels like work. I love Architecture but many times I'd like to be in Bahamas instead of working on some proposal. Just like perfect love bliss relationships don't exist.
I could be wrong, too.
My advice? Stop feeling sorry for yourself. Get a job doing something (doesn't necessarily have to be architecture), and if you dislike the job, start looking for a new one but don't just quit your old job. It shouldn't be a revelation that you won't be 100% passionate about every aspect of an entry-level job. The work that you are describing at your old firm seems pretty typical to me for an entry-level designer.
Xenakis is correct, get your shit together.
I appreciate all the comments.
Even though I am a hardworking person I think i focus my energy on wrong aspects and dont set clear goals.
It is easier than that. Try to start enjoying your life.
just be lucky you weren't born where I was(Bakersfield, Ca.). People w/o direction, were asked to join the Marines - usually meant a trip to Asscrackistan.
Xenakis, I wish I was born in Bakersfield CA, would probably have more opportunities.
I was born in middle east where being creative is far from you because people have way more serious issues to take care of such as their basic freedoms.
This is not the issue anywways =)
many of my co-workers are Persian and very good at what they do - move to U.S. we have many middle east communities here.
My steel structures professor was Turkish and she was very good
sounds like you just can't handle a full-time job and the real world. sorry buddy but that's how its going to be basically forever. you're an adult! yay! time to grow up!
in my life personally, when i felt depressed for an extended period of time (social and love life went to hell, didn't like my career path anymore), with a lot of "i don't know where i'm going i life" on my mind, i committed to whatever is in front of me and did it as best i could-- whether it be school, personal hobbies, or work. 3 years later, i have a great education with multiple degrees, a job where i'm learning new things every day (although work feels like work obviously), a great design skill set, a number of personal non-career creative goals achieved, and a future that is, in fact, WIDE OPEN.
still don't know what i'm doing, but if i quit what i was doing when i felt lost where would i be? nowhere, and most likely depressed about it. don't stop. if you don't know what you're doing, at least DO SOMETHING.
ps adjusting from college to work life is really hard for the first half a year, but then you start to get into the groove of things and each day doesn't seem like a mountain. you're probably used to 2 hours of classes, 4 hours of free time, 2 hours of classes, and then the bar. your body and mind will eventually adjust to the extra workload.
If you find architecture boring, my bet is that you would find about 90% of other jobs even more boring. At least we do something remotely creative. If you like the outdoors and not want to be stuck behind the computer, go get a gig with a construction crew. You will either love it or start appreciating the white collar life more. Or flip burgers.
Quite a few advanced degree holding cebtral and eastern Europeans drive cabs in New York City. Not too strenuous, and you get to meet lots of people.
It appears that you had 8 jobs in 30 months. So the work equivalent of speed-dating.
get off Someday isle:
sounds like a manic depressive to me
You should watch this video
Thanks everyone for comments!
I like how harsh some of them are =)
caitlincopeland ! That video really gave me some perspective, thank you!!
Maybe you like building things rather than being in an office stuck in front of a computer.
crimson, yes! but in todays job market its almost impossible to find a field that you are not stuck in front of the computer.
no, that's not true at all actually.
This is a rather belated comment but reading your post especially about the frustration, the desire to meld together something creative and physical, and the need to feel like you've found your place doing what you love (rather than the constant feeling that 'it just doesn't feel quite right') chimed so much that I had to comment!
I studied Architecture and finished back in 2007 without any idea what to do. I spent a while thinking I'd paint and travel, wait tables to pay rent, have fun and 'figure it out'...fast track to now, I'm a Business Analyst, read my fair share of materials about passion, finding fulfilling careers, start ups, personality tests etc and I'm still figuring it out. However, I've found a great work place with opportunities for personal development and a manager who is keen to support this journey (I've been up front about this to them, which gives me room to figure it out while also paying the rent.
The video by Caitlincopeland was interesting and I think that's key. I also agree with the harsher comments here about just Doing something - just keep moving even though you have no clear sight of where you're going. Try not to feel like there's a huge rush to figure it out, Enjoy the Ride. It sounds like you have a lot of broad interests and probably skill in lots of areas, but if that video has any truth to it, it'd be worth picking one or two of your interests and committing to them (could take years) and see where they take you. Another post I'd read was about how your skill (which takes years to craft), whatever it may be, becomes your passion so if you're in your mid 20s -30s, there's still quite some time to go yet!
Good luck and please let me know if you ever figure out a short cut to this issue!
I don't think the profession of architecture is the problem. It is YOU. You seem to not like doing any type of work for too long. Perhaps you need to work on yourself. Truth is there is grunt work involved in most professions. It is up to you to make it feel like a hobby and enjoy it.
Post a picture and I'll ... Oh, sorry, I thought you said 'wife'.
Dude watch into the wild movie ..... I hope you will love it. :P
You atleast have option to do something else in your life. I have seen eperienced many people who can't even quit job and think of doing something else, bacause they are struct economicaly, socially etc. You have whole life ahead... think... take time ... do what you like... its not at all compulsory to do a boring job in architecture if u have education in that.
If you ask me I will suggest go for a vacation without thinking anything for some months....
go fishing and ask the wind.
"where thy should I go." 3 times with your left leg up, spin counter clockwise, and clap 4 times with the meditation palm 5 inches apart.
then that night, the mystic answer will come to you your dreams ...
just make sure you go to bed exactly at 12am. no more no less.
Did you like the global sustainability program in LA? Didn't it give you some more options for work? I feel like you and am thinking of studying sustainable Urbanism, but there is no guarantee if i would like it more. Also parametric architecture is one option if you are interested in computer science. I don't have any advice, because i am in the same boat as you. If you know what you would like more - try it, but if you have no clue (like me) you have 2 options - experiment (risky) or start enjoying architecture and being grateful for what you have (health,a job, sunsets etc.)
p.s. Did you get a scholarship from UCLA?
He's not complaining he's just able to see through the bullshit. The way architecture works is you are told you are earning a professional degree but in reality you get a useless Art Degree and are filled with arrogant thoughts about how important creative your professional tasks will be and then the only job opportunities are to become an overworked underpaid blueprint technician. And if you try to find a new path you are guilted by people like the ones on this site saying you weren't worthy or couldn't handle the amount of dedication required. Congratulations on seeing through the nonsense. Practice architecture your whole life but get a worthwhile day job. Shouldn't be that painful either, you can make more being a sales guy in the shoe section at Nordstrom's
Architecture is kinda like a Venus fly Trap. Looks tempting from the outside. But once you're knee deep in it your legs are missing, your face is melting and you start thinking, how the fuck did I get here, and why?
I like to think that I am architecting myself outta architecture! Use those valuable problem solving skillz.
I was in the same boat and I couldn't agree more with starchitectalpha more. Although you have had many "jobs" you have had only one career which is architecture. When I was working in the field my friends in other fields had more down time, they picked up hobbies like indoor soccer, they had more money, and even though they were not passionate about their work they seemed to enjoy it for the most part. They had more time to develop personally where in architecture you only will have time for architecture. Maybe try a more hands on career path. Try buding sets for movies if you can land a spot, work as a fabricator, make furniatre. Etc... Maybe go back to school but leave architecture. Throw it all out, hide all your work, delete your online portfolio, unsubscribe from all the Archi pages in fb Twitter Instagram, then delete this app. Try clearing your head for a few months and try to live like people who don't know anything about architecture other than we are suppose to build "Buildings".
Then why are you on Archinect?
Because I like it as a hobby like painting, soccer, music. I'm not a professional in any of those but I enjoy the communities. Should I unfollow those threads as well since I'm not a professional? It was a big part of my life. I still appreciate the art
Ok but come on. Bear in mind there are those of us that does this for a living. Just because you are burned out doesn't mean you should spread your negativity against those who are still doing this.
It's toxic... you know.
Balkins, why are you on archinect?
If you're going to really play forum police, start by exiling yourself until you actually start practicing architecture.
I didn't know Architects are also Psychologists/Psychiatrists. As someone said above...
"Get your shit together..."
I think I have the same problem.
"What is your major Malfunction private Pyle?"
a good read for you is "No Excuses" by Brian Tracy
OP: have you thought about construction/ construction management/ design build/ general contracting?
I think the most difficult part is going from this idea we are fed that our career is part of a higher calling and that our work really will contribute to society. Now don't get me wrong some architects really do great work but just like musicians the majority won't. When we started in school I'm sure we all had the same idea as people becoming doctors, engineers or maybe teachers, that your work directly affects people. So it's incredibly tough to realize wait, making specs for condos and strip malls is not a higher calling and go look for "just a job." After thinking that you were working so hard to really contribute to society it's hard to just become a loan officer, pay roll specialist, flooring sales man/women ect. I think there's a search that a lot of architects have who are leaving the profession because we think wait, I've worked so hard and gained skills there must be something important for me to do with them and just getting "a job" sounds like we are giving up. I think the biggest jump is realizing like Driko said that your job outside of architecture might be boring but it will open up other much more fulfilling areas in your life financially and socially. Much more so than sticking with a career that is mostly smoke and mirrors.
Also a lot of those large scale projects that really do break ground design wise or in sustainability that we were shown in a lot of architecture lectures, I'm going to take a guess that for the majority of them, they were a competition so DD was done on the backs of low paid interns working unpaid overtime with the developer getting our "highly important" design skills for free.