The short answer is probably – power & satisfaction. For most students, the college years coincide with developing a sense of identity (who you are). Though a complex concept, you can get a quick definition by breaking it down into 5 elements: your 1. values, 2. interests, 3. needs, 4. beliefs & 5. purpose. Making decisions based on these 5 elements gives people a high degree of life satisfaction & power. While this may sound good, you can only get such benefits by knowing what these 5 elements are for you specifically – this is “self-awareness.”
In choosing courses and your major, you’ll be most satisfied with options that are a match with your values, needs, interests, beliefs and purpose. If you aren’t aware of these elements of identity, making important academic decisions either becomes a gamble (a guess), or is left to other people (such as parents who will likely decide based on what they value, believe, need, or are interested in). When decisions are made this way, students tend to experience considerable dis-satisfaction and college can quickly become a hassle.
The Bottom Line: Taking on the challenge of answering the question “Who am I?” brings great benefits for making satisfying choices in college. And, with satisfaction comes increased motivation and confidence in your studies and efforts on campus. Don’t gamble with your major or allow others to make choices for you – take the lead, become aware, and enjoy your efforts.