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Choosing a Lab: Don't Let FOMO Hang You Up

Choosing a Lab: Don't Let FOMO Hang You Up

If you find yourself in the enviable position of getting to choose between two research positions, don’t let the fear of missing out prevent you from making a decision.The best strategy is to start by considering each position individually without comparing them to each other.

First, think about position #1. Make a pro and con list with the information you learned at the interview, determine if your schedule is compatible, ask yourself how much you like the research topic or techniques you'll be doing. Were you inspired at the interview or bored and couldn’t wait for it to be over?

Then, do the same with position #2.

If both positions seem equally great then compare the two directly. Ask yourself, "Which will a more meaningful use of my time?" Even if you can’t quite put your finger on the reason, if you have a strong feeling one way or the other let it guide your decision.

If neither position stands out ask yourself, "Is this decision hard to make because I'm afraid I'll make the wrong decision, or miss out on something great in position #2 if I choose position #1?" If you answered "yes" to either of these, then know you are in good company because this is common when choosing between two options.

But, unfortunately, sometimes college is about choosing which door to walk though and which door to close.