I'm sorry, I have been following this thread patiently and had to comment on some of the remarks I read.
Originally Posted by W///
Don't get a job solely for the money. Find a job that makes it feel like it's not a job. I love being able to say that.
I strongly second this statement. With Obamacare coming down the pipeline, healthcare professionals are bracing for a new way of life. Don't choose a profession based on what you think you'll make someday... This is coming from the point of view of a practicing anesthesiologist.
I make pretty decent money, sure, but it wasn't until I was 30 that i was done with my training. Coincidentally, that was the year I got my first M3
. The M3 was one of my childhood dreams as well! Before that, I drove hand me downs that included a Mitsubishi minivan and Buick LeSabre, lol. I enjoy my job, but it is extremely stressful at times, and I will never forget some of the sacrifices I made to get here (missing out on time/experiences with friends and loved ones, failed relationships, etc.).
The days of Doctors being "rich" is long gone... In Southern California, I'm middle-class... Still have a hard time affording a house here, have to be careful to manage my expenses... And $$$ is hard-earned no matter what field of medicine you are in. Even as an attending, I wake up before 6am every day and sometimes work 24 hour shifts... do that for a while and you learn to appreciate the value of money (and your free time!). I have more $ than I did before, but it is hard work making it, and therefore it is hard to waste.
I hope I don't sound like I'm complaining... I also feel privileged to be able to do what I do, and it is greatly rewarding. My advice is just to find what suits you and give it your all. If you work hard, make the sacrifices that need to be made, and dedicate yourself to being the best you can be at whatever field that is your passion, I think you will look back at your life and consider it a "success."
With that said, I guarantee you that there will be M3s/M4s out there when you are ready. You are at a special age. Don't lose your childhood trying to prepare for the future, but believe me when I say that time flies, and you don't want to look back at your life and feel like you wasted it. BALANCE... never forget about your future, but enjoy every day because you never know when it might be your last!