direction-less or less direct?
It’s no secret that I was once more concerned with the prospect of being single for the rest of my life than I was with that of what I would do, professionally, for the rest of my life. Contrary to the aspirations of my overly romanticised and slightly vivid imagination, we are no longer living in the 19th century and as such, pastimes such as embroidery, flower arrangement and piano practice aren’t quite going to cut it in terms of bringing in the dough. While I admit to the odd unconscious dribble at the thought of Mr Darcy emerging from the pond in his clingy pants, this doesn’t mean I’m in the same place as I once was. In fact, if I were truly trapped in the 19th century then I would be dangerously close to resigning myself to the prospect of being an old maid; I’d be happy to make a career our of it I’m sure. Granted it wouldn’t be quite as socially acceptable as that of its polar opposite, the ‘homemaker’, as referred to in the 21st century, but I’d be happy at least. Poor, but happy.
I’m certain the feelings I’ve confessed to having felt in the past aren’t foreign to many of us. What I have noticed in myself though, is a shift. Perhaps it’s only once you’ve been burnt by another, or been the burner that your perspective changes. Life is cruel, full of attitudinally deranged and professionally dissatisfied individuals who detest their job, life and anyone who happens to impose on it between the hours separating morning tea and lunch. Unfortunately, it appears there is an abundance of professional discontent in the world. Why is it then that people settle for a sub-standard existence? Their dream of being an astronaut swapped for a career in beauty therapy, specialising in colonic irrigation.
Why do people rush their career choice? Is it because we’re pushed to pick a direction from an early age? The old ‘when I grow up…’ affirmation? We are practically forced to choose a career prior to even leaving school. With such little life-experience under our belts how are we possibly supposed to know what we want to do with the rest of our working lives? How many of us actually pursue a career in our studied field once leaving university? It’s no wonder we find people around us, even ourselves despairing at the thought of a HECS debt up the ying-yang and little else to show for it, should we choose not to use it. Is it all a waste? No, or so I believe. Better to have tried, tried again and kept trying rather than settle and resign yourslf to the idea of living a life of unfulfilled potential. Nothing breeds career and subsequent life contempt faster.
I, like others, am guilty of possessing the odd character flaw. Some would argue that amongst these is my ability to change career direction as often as I change my underwear. As sure as Julia Roberts was the Runaway Bride, I have similarly gained a reputation for making profound, whip-lash evoking statements about what I’ll try my hand at next. In 26 years, I have certainly clocked up a few. Piano teacher turned arts-appreciator, aspiring psychologist-cum physio whose knowledge of fertility treatments and financing is not-so-surprisingly of little use to an aspiring-writer and ultimate business owner…I rest my case.
Mum’s motto to inspire me is ‘Go Chloe!’ but perhaps ‘Give it a go Chloe’ would be more aptly suited. At times, I may feel as directionless as a broken compass, but I wouldn’t be happy if I knew I wasn’t trying before buying, so to speak. I don’t want substandard.
Financial reward with the benefit of self-achievement, respect and ultimately job-satisfaction, is what I aspire to. Whether I’m living with my head in the clouds or not, I’m determined to keep trying until the fit is right. At times, I get despondent. Particularly when it seems like everyone around me (most depressingly when they are younger than I am) has it together. It worries me that by the time I reach this same point I may be on the Zimmer frame and donning a pair of supersofts. A compensatory thought at least is that I won’t have died without trying everything.
And if nothing else, I will have one hell of a character to show for it.
(Image credit: 1.)