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Tag Archives: Career Change

The Plan – Steps to My Career Break

So, here’s the loosely put together plan. It will be a lot more solid by the end of the month.

November 2012 – Start selling all large worldly possessions that can not fit into my childhood bedroom. (sofa, kitchen table, etc) and give whatever I can’t sell to ex-significant other for his new place. Announce the intended plans and the breakup to close friends?

December 2012 – Move back in with parents (if the world ends I’m going to be sooo miffed!), make sure all utilities and services in my name are cancelled or transferred appropriately. NOTE: Also, see midnight showing of The Hobbit to really psych myself for going to NZ!!

January 2013 – Adjust to commuting 25-30 minutes to work. Ramp up savings to reflect no rent, no utilities, and keep in mind that the higher cost of commuting to work. Pay off car loan.

February 2013 – Start getting together equipment: Backpack, new hiking boots, appropriate clothing, etc. Apply for New Zealand Working Holiday Visa.

March 2013 – Settle on an insurance provider for both US coverage and International coverage. Decide on exact departure date and start seriously looking at purchasing a one way ticket. Get all necessary booster shots and a complete physical.

April 2013 – Be super nice and give employer 2 months notice? Announce to friends/family/everyone who doesn’t know that aren’t coworkers that I am leaving for New Zealand soonish.  Start selling off remaining items that can be sold (TV, TV stand, bed, computer desk, etc). Buy new laptop for trip! Weee!

May 2013 – See about getting 3 months worth of my prescription prescribed to help mitigate cost of medication for a couple of months after quitting in June. Get new national and international insurance  signed up for so there is not break in coverage. Last Day of Work and my 28th Birthday on the 31st!!

June 2013 – Originally I had thought to have my last day on the 1st of June because that was my 4 year anniversary with the company. But since May 31st is my birthday, plus it falls on Friday and June 1st is on a Saturday, what better way to ring in my birthday and quit my job then doing it all on a Friday? This month is going to be either very crazy or very relaxed, as I’m planning on going to Portland, OR at the end of the month for LeakyCon 2013. I will either fly out there or take a crazy road trip to it with a friend I met at the LC 2012 who wants to see more of the US. Also have to decide whether or not to sell my car.

July 2012/August 2012 – Flying to New Zealand to start a new phase in my life!

 
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Posted by on October 17, 2012 in Life, Travel

 

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Inspiration: MOVE

I have made my decision. I am going to take a career break to travel. So far, most of the people that know me have been very supportive of this idea and think it is just what I need. I haven’t decided how long the break will be, or all the specifics. I do have a few specific places in mind, and I’m going to give myself 6 – 9 months before I quit my job and leave. I also have to take into account finances and all that jazz.

I will be doing this solo for part, if not all of, the trip. I am excited and terrified at the the same time! Most of all, though, I’m happy about it. I’m happy I can finally make this decision for myself.

As I make more concrete plans and have more thoughts on the topic of long term travel I will be posting them here 🙂

 
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Posted by on September 8, 2012 in Travel

 

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What To Do – Travel, College, Career?

The problem with this quitting your job business is that you have to figure out what you want to do next.

It has become  very clear I can not stay at my current job. I told my therapist yesterday about all the reasons I wanted to quit. After listening to me she told me that it sounded like my company was taking advantage of me and my codependent nature (my newest label!) by paying me to little, not recognizing how important I am, and wanting me to take on managerial responsibilities without any of the perks. She has advised me to start searching for a new job or to make another plan for my future because it will be extremely difficult for me to continue to heal mentally if I stay in my current workplace.

This has made me feel a lot better about my feelings toward my job. I feel more justified in my frustrations and desire to quit. I feel less guilty about about giving up “such a good job” and moving on with my life.

I have come to the conclusion that I have three real options if I quit my current job:  Travel/Volunteer Bum, Nontraditional Student, or getting a New Job.

Travel/Volunteer Bum

My therapist seems to like my idea of going to volunteer in Thailand teaching computer skills to middle school students (through uvolunteer.org). I want to do this for at least two months so I can feel like I really had the experience of living there. This should also give me enough time to adapt and shake off a lot of my social anxiety about being in a strange place with new people and a completely different culture.

After that I would either move on to the Nontraditional Student path or see what opportunities I can find in the volunteer/travel field. If I could become a world travelling bum I’d very happy, I think. The thing is I’ve never traveled outside of North America so there is a chance I won’t like it. Plus, while I do have some money in the bank to support myself once I quit my job, travelling plus helping pay half the bills related to my significant other and I’s apartment would probably deplete them within a year easily. I would have to find away to make money while travelling, or find a job in the travel/volunteerism field back home.

Nontraditional Student

The last two years or so I’ve also been thinking about going back to school. Really, the only major that has really stuck out to me is one in Classics. For those of you that don’t know what that is, here’s an excerpt from Wikipedia:

Classics (sometimes encompassing Classical Studies or Classical Civilization) is the branch of the Humanities comprising the languages, literature, philosophy, history, art, archaeology and other culture of the ancient Mediterranean world (Bronze Age ca. BC 3000 – Late Antiquity ca. AD 300–600); especially Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome during Classical Antiquity (ca. BC 600 – AD 600). Initially, the study of the Classics (the period’s literature) was the principal study in the humanities.

It just sounds like it covers so much, and I am interested in ancient history and think it would be fun to learn Latin. Not to mention it’s the type of degree that teaches you thinking  and communication skills, which I believe are really lacking in today’s society.

But university costs money.. lots of money. Plus, chances are I would have to relocate to attend a university that has this as a major. While I would love to travel around the world, for some reason moving somewhere else bothers me. I like the idea of being able to come home and be in my home town, even if I’m overseas for months at a time. Moving away for college to live doesn’t sit well though. It’s very weird.

A New Job

Of course, I could always look for another job in my current field. Right now I’m an IT person and will have 5 years of experience in June 2013. I could probably get another job somewhere else fixing computers or doing help desk work. Plus, if I don’t jump on to the next job then my current skill set will very quickly become out of date. IT people have to stay current or risk falling behind and becoming obsolete in their career track.

However, IT people are notoriously used, abused and under paid. We work nights and weekends along with our 40 hour a week day shifts.  We are expected to know everything there is to know about all things computer related, when really it takes a team of several people who specialize in specific parts of IT to run a department effectively. Plus, end users are usually horrible people who think they know more than you and know you could get things fixed quicker if you were really doing your job. Overall it’s a lot of stress, very little reward, and completely mind numbing, unimaginative work.

Decisions

I know, at the very least, I will most likely take two months to go to Thailand to volunteer as a teacher. My therapist is very on board with this and it sounds like an amazing thing to me, if a little to much like a dream that can’t possibly happen (even though it easily could). Since I was a kid and started making friends with people from different countries on the internet my goal has always been to travel the world, so this seems like a logical step to take. I’m not sure what I will do after that, it probably just depends on how things go there and if any opportunities make themselves known in the months before, during, and after it. But it is a first step, which I’ve always heard is the hardest part of change.

What are your plans for the future?

 
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Posted by on August 26, 2012 in Life, Mental Health, Travel, Work

 

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Profit vs Progress – A Personal Struggle

The path to progress and profit

Image taken from an article on Good.Is titled Progress vs Profit

I am at a cross roads in my life. My current job pays the bills with extra to stash away in the bank, it has good benefits, and I am basically completely independent and can prioritize my day in any way as long as it benefits the company and stuff gets done.

However, my job does not make me happy. I do not feel like I am accomplishing anything, that I am giving back in any way, or that I am being challenged at all. There is no growth here, those above me on the food chain I often think are idiots or spineless, and a lot of my comments or suggestions fall on deaf ears. I take attitude from my users, tell my boss, and am told to “bite the bullet”. I ask for a reasonable raise, and I’m told that my boss has consulted the vendors that work for me and that they say that doesn’t seem reasonable. I do not hate my coworkers, but I enjoy the company of very few and have even fewer that I have a anything in common with. There is no creativity here. There is no self expression. It is a dull and lifeless place full of squabbling hens and cocky roosters.

I have decided I want nothing more to do with this “easy” life path to Profit, I want a fulfilling one that challenges me. I still want to Profit so I can pay my bills and feel financially secure, but I also want to feel like I’m on the path to Progress and doing something with myself and the world around me.  Not only does the squiggly line look like the harder path but it looks like there are way more chances for adventure on it. And my life, thus far, has been seriously lacking in any real adventures.

Growing up I always thought that money = freedom and debt = prison. I needed a lot of money to live a fulfilling life and to have a real sense of self-worth. I believed that up until I started writing this entry.  Money is a prison for me. The more I make, the more I need, and the less secure I feel. I keep saying that once I am making a certain amount of money a year, or have a certian amount in the bank, I will feel less stressed and more secure, but the closer I get to that goal the more anxiety I feel. The more money I have in the bank the worse I feel about buying anything at all. The bigger my financial cushion the more terrified I become of falling, failing, and losing it.

I feel better being able to mull over this internally and look forward to hearing Amy’s (and anyone else’s) thoughts on it. I don’t really know how I am going to get over my unhealthy relationship with money, but I’m ready for something to derail me from the Profit Path and get me started down the line with a little more Progress in it.

 

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