Zeteophobia Assistance

Do you suffer from Zeteophobia?

Many students believe that they MUST have their entire educational and vocational future planned out. They see this as an impossible task and begin to blame themselves for not having their lives together. As a result they experience a high level of anxiety and become anxious and fearful of career planning.
John Krumbholz, noted psychologist and Stanford University professor, called this anxiety Zeteophobia – the fear of career planning based on the assumption that a person can predict and control the future.


Is there a cure for zeteophobia?

Yes! The cure for zeteophobia is accepting that no one can predict and control the future with a great degree of accuracy and that it is be perfectly OK to engage in an active lifestyle that might generate some interesting alternatives.
Adopting a belief like this will liberate you from zeteophobia by both learning and benefiting from unplanned events in our lives. Career planning is important, but even though we make plans, sometimes things do not go as planned.
There is a high probability that the career we choose when we are 18 years old will change in the future. In fact, people change careers at least five times during their lifetime. The key is to be open to new possibilities when unplanned events happen.


Advice to Avoid Zeteophobia

  • Keep your career options open—be alert to possibilities.
  • Continue learning as long as you live.
  • Make it your goal to enjoy a satisfying life.
  • Create your own luck. Be on the look out for opportunities and prepare yourself to take advantage of them.
  • Use mistakes as a good way of learning.
  • Accept jobs, just to get started, knowing you can learn new skills.
Remember that unplanned events are a normal part of life. Do not view these events as a negative, rather a happenstance full of possibilities.  The connection to career planning is for individuals to create and transform unplanned events into career opportunities.
  • Position yourself appropriately
  • Surround yourself with positive influences
  • Raise the antenna
  • Be prepared to follow up on every good idea with action in order to capitalize on the moment.

Krumboltz, J.D., & Lewin, A.S. (2004). Luck Is No Accident: Making the Most of Happenstance in Your Life and Career. Atascadero, CA: Impact Publishers.

    Contact Information

    Location: Student Center Bldg. 19, 2nd Floor
    Parking Lot 1
    Fall and Spring Semester Office Hours:
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    (Closed on Fridays during the Summer)
    Phone: 714-484-7120
    Fax: 714-826-4070
    Admissions Office