To say that in my early 20s I was lost and confused regarding my career options will definitely be an under-statement. I did not know what exactly I wanted. Though I obviously knew what I didn’t want. I kept looking for those crucial answers in the wrong places. I didn’t realise that the true answers always come from within. Maybe I wasn’t mature enough to know how to look deep in my heart and soul. That pleasure was a few years from finding me. After completing my graduation, I joined the Indian Coast Guard, a very prestigious career (though I wasn’t still sure of joining). I really wish someone had told me that “because you live once” you are not bound for the rest of our lives to our degrees and marks obtained.
My job had many perks and a descent pay, but only with time I realised that one shouldn’t pick a job with great vacation time but should pick a career that doesn’t need escaping from. So after completing almost 6.5 years of service I decided to steer right off the road and take a different route.
And let me tell you all kind of advices I got from friends, family, colleagues and on occasion, the opinionated strangers (I know they had the best of the intensions).
But on to the advice and smart arguments I did receive and my reactions:-
1. Well it’s a job that pays well. (And then we talk about money not buying happiness)
2. Can you just wait and see what happens? May be things will change with time! (First of all I do not believe in MAGIC!! also we talk about setting sails against the wind)
3. Why can’t you be just appreciative of what all the things that you have? (Trust me I am more than appreciative!! I am appreciative for my life that is why I want to live it to the fullest!)
4. You will not get another job so easily. (Thanks for those encouraging words! But I can do better without them.)
5. Others would give anything to have your job (good for them!) You have time to do what you want later (And how do you know that?! I don’t think I am banking on the whole ‘time’ promise)
Depression, blaming others, feeling cynical were all indications of alarm for me and it was time to re-consider the state of things. Staying the ordinary course or walking the radical course, the choice was mine. It always has been. Dont waste your time and energy and remind yourself that because you live once, you will make the most of it.
Actually, one may choose to stay on a path that does not necessarily make you happy but is worth the trouble as it helps to pay the bills or one may choose to take a drastic measure and change his life now. Both decisions can and do serve you well at different stages of life.
There is no doubt that quitting a job, giving up the constant cash flow among other things, changing the course of life and plunge into the unknown is a scary business and it only gets harder with time. The more time and effort you invest in it, it takes a lot more to make you walk away. Big decisions of life take guts and it is very hard to let go and take a risk; In fact, one may argue that it is even-shall we say- the opposite of smart!
But today with lot of conviction I can tell you that there is nothing stupid about following your heart at any expense whatsoever! Being miserable now so that you are potentially “happy” later is a bad formula for living. It is ok to give it all up and start all over again to follow your passion.
Our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers and it reminds us that because you live once there is something more to life.
Somebody has very rightly said that you only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough!!
Awaiting to hear your thoughts and comments.
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