What Do I Want To Be When I’m Big?

“I want to be a unicorn!” Sound familiar? No, not to me either. But I did want to be a ninja. Children have all kinds of ideas about what they will be when they “are big”. Sometimes children know what they will be and stick with it through adulthood. We all know the kid who always dreamed about filling vending machines with stale candy, and no one was surprised when he ended up doing… what?

Hut! Hut! Hut!

Hut! Hut! Hut!

This series of posts is based on a journal I kept while trying to discover what I wanted from life. I looked over the journal and updated it for where I am today. We’ll present my journal in blog format, with added monkey-ness, new ideas and thoughts,drawings and whatever else seems to be a good idea at the time.

Monkey ninja! Watch out benaners..

Monkey ninja! Watch out benaners..

I made a list of all the things I wanted to be when I was a child. Some are reasonable, most are silly.

At least I didn’t want to be a salesman. Talk about crazy dreams. Anyway, my list looks like this:

  • Artist.  
  • Armyman. 
  •  Home Builder.  
  • Game Store/Hobbyshop Owner.  
  • Blackbelt.  
  • Ninja.  
  • Architect.  
  • Priest…

That’s quite a list. It isn’t hard to see that I grew up in the 70s and 80s. Saturday morning cartoons… Kung-Fu Theater movies… Priest? It’s a bit enlightening, and a little embarrassing, to think back and remember what the little you thought the big you would be doing for a living. Somehow, I missed out on the lucrative blackbelt/homebuilder/artist craze of the mid 90s…

Another monkey masterpiece...

Another monkey masterpiece…


Get yourself some blank paper and something to write and draw with. Multiple colors would be best, for drawing tools…Think back to when you were a little monkey, or whatever thing you identify with. I won’t judge if you think of yourself as a little tangerine, or a tiny

Holy Monkey!

Holy Monkey!

Anyway, list all of the things you wanted to be when you were little, up through your early teens. Spend some time pondering this. Write these things down, even if you wanted to be a cat. Leave some room for notes to be added in following exercises. Be honest with yourself, even if you feel silly. Just remember, monkey priest is already taken…

Ready to do something with this list? Move on to part 2.

Find Your Path In Life Series Home



  1. Darn it! I wanted to be a monkey priest too! Thanks for crushing my hopes and dreams. I wanted to be a doctor or a teacher. I sucked at chemistry in college so there went the doctor dream, but undo love teaching!

    1. I barely made it out of chemistry with a C… As I’ve gotten older I think being a theoretical physicist would be cool. I think the blending of science and metaphysics is where the next big breakthrough is going to happen.

  2. […] This is a response to this post. […]

  3. To be honest, I don’t remember much of ‘what I want to be when I grow up’ from my very early years. I knew what I liked to do at the time, the coming weekend, month or season. I just don’t think I knew what long term meant. 🙂

    1. I don’t know if many of us did. Sometimes I still don’t!

      1. Exactly! And that’s the problem with that. Why have we forgotten? I’m sure our dreams were just as magnificent as they are today. Maybe it’s time to do some regression hypnosis. 🙂

      2. Life gets in the way… and fear. We do what we think we should, instead of what we want to do.

  4. I had no aspirations to be anything as a child..I ws just a happy child. As a teenager, I wanted to be an artist/illustrator when I graduated from the local Community College, but my plans changed as I flowed through my life.

    1. My plans changed as well… And continue to even today. It’s like surfing through life…

  5. […] can find the first assignment here. But here’s a short […]

  6. New to your blog, I just spent an hour browsing, reading and laughing out loud. =) What a lovely way to begin my day… off to find the colored pens and get creative, thanks !

    1. Hey Tish- I’m glad you find my blog funny… Doug and I try to present our topics with a bit of humor… I find it makes them more appealing, especially to me!

      Keep creating!

  7. When I was five I wanted to be a clown. Then I grew up, became a school teacher, and guess what… I made it. They laugh at me all the time.

    1. I believe you… My wife is a high school English teacher. When she’s not a clown she’s an animal trainer…

  8. When I was a young child living in Egypt, my grandparents would never let me on the roof. When they would ask me what I wanted to do when i grow up I’d tell them “Go on the Roof!” My grandma still lives in that house and I’ve still never been on that roof. Guess i still have some growing up to do. Time to plan my next trip to Egypt.

    When I was a young monkey I don’t think I was that eager to grow up, so I never really seemed to think much about what I’d be when I grow up. I started thinking about that when they started telling us to apply for college! And I’m still not sure… I think as a kid I would have wanted to grow up to be a Ninja Turtle.

    I think I still do…


    1. Hey Jones- I know the feeling. I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up, and now I’m telling my daughter she needs to start thinking about the same thing for herself!

      Certain personality types have trouble settling for one thing I think… And I fit into this group. Creatives want to do everything and nothing at the same time. I’m trying to figure out how to refine and focus these desires.

      1. Hahaha, you’re definitely on to something here, Doug. Everything and nothing at the same time is a perfect description of what I’ve wanted to do all my life…


  9. Hey Doug, I love what i’ve read so far…I’d say you’ve achieved your goal as an artist! I love monkey priest! I can’t wait to read the other posts.

    1. Thanks! I’m still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.

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