This isn’t an angst ridden post so feel free to read on. It is a reflection on the tortured thoughts of what ought to be a simple enough thing. As an incentive to read through I have put a crazy list at the end. Do you have the insight to guide/direct me to what to do that makes me happy and pays the bills? Bringing this up with people that are apparently settled and content often yields surprising disclosures, so I know I am not alone.
Thinking of all the people I am fortunate enough to know who I really believe are happy and settled in their own heads with the path their life has taken and I can’t even stretch to five. Even then I can’t be sure.
As a vegetarian friend acknowledges, it is because they are fortunate enough to live in the wealthy Western world that they even have the time or luxury of making that choice. The reverse holds true if one was an African subsistence farmer just aiming to survive from one day to the next. They haven’t got the luxury of worrying about superfluous things. I guess that is why we see immigrant populations who are lucky enough to step away from a ghastly situation at home and come here, to The West, as willing to do the jobs we don’t want to. To them we have everything and even the crappiest jobs are an unimaginable improvement for them. It is too easy to look down on them for doing the jobs we don’t want for money so low we would never stoop that low. They must look at us with a similar reversal of amazement.
We have the luxury to worry about personal fulfilment in our lives and careers. however as we become products of environment and it is the human desire for more, better, warmer, faster etc etc that spurs us into where we are now. We agonised about the right school for our daughter and not just having a school. I agonise about having the right job when I have money in the bank, a Ti bicycle, a warm house, a pc and and and…
All that aside, I feel that this is a tipping point in my life when I have the flexibility to choose. Making the right choice is the question. I am great at many things and equally I suck at many things as well. It is getting the blend right that is so elusive. If I got the blend right I’d be so on it. I am hampered by a lack of formal education as I left school at seventeen. Back then I was so fortunate as I knew everything and there was little I could be told.
[As an interesting aside I found my first driving license w a photo on from when I was seventeen. In my head I was every inch the veteran, but looking at the photo I don’t look like I had even started to shave regularly. I can barely bear to think what I was like to be around. Quite punchable I’d imagine]
And now I feel like squandered opportunity for education. However, working in a ski resort and hitch-hiking across Australia with little money taught me a few lessons my university going colleagues missed. How to parley this into something useful?
To recap what I have either done or dabbled then herewith a selection;
- Been to over 40 countries (even been arrested in Russia – for failure to pay a bribe)
- Infantry soldier
- Police Officer
- Ski boot fitter and general ski technician
- Offsider on an onshore drilling rig
- Offsider on a helicopter
- Press-ganged bush fire crew
- Hospitality – collecting and cleaning glasses in various pubs/bars
- Geologists assistant (all the hump work)
- Various telesales
- Pick-up truck canopies & accessories
- Professional Services
- Trainer and consultant around Opportunity Management
- Started, owned, run and sold a successful organic veg box business
- Major account management (publishing)
- Advanced motorcyclist
- Volunteered time to various worthy things
At this point the post could get even more circular and even more rambling and a real danger of “pity me” creeps in. If you are the possessor of the magic bullet for me then don’t be shy. I wanna hear, however outlandish it may seem.
Dominic is 43, quite self-sufficient, has two passports and wants to do something interesting with the remainder of his life.
2 thoughts on “The Big Question”
Go and make some wine. Enrol on the Plympton Course and get a “stage” with my mate Hesford in the Roussillion. Cos bar being a Doc or other medical specalilty always an option? you have done most other things!
I’ve been advised this week that the world is now my oyster. Go forth and enjoy the rest of your life. Away from here.
Best piece of advice thus far is “do something that makes you smile and go to sleep at night thinking, that was fun and I get to do it all again tomorrow.”. He’s a wise man, my friend. Except there are still bills to pay, and fun doesn’t fund a mortgage I find.
If it helps, I did my degree when I was 37, working part-time and full-time mum. It’s never too late.
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