Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Crossroads

I've never been here before . . . not knowing what I want out of life. Knowing I don't want to be here but not having a clue which way to go. No ideas whatsoever. Such unfamiliar territory.

I have always had an idea of where I wanted to go with my life. Not really goals or defined steps but a general idea of what I wanted and a dedication to trusting the Universe to take me there.  I am not a planner but it works for me.

When I was younger I knew I wanted to teach, to get married and to have children. That's exactly what happened although the route to get there was not one I could ever have planned. Most of my life has been that way. Not necessarily the way I would have planned it but mostly perfectly interesting and amazing.

I've had a lot of different jobs in my life that were not in the plan but I loved most of them and I learned something from all of them that I took to the next job.  I usually had some idea of what I wanted to do next, beyond the job I had  at the time and sometimes I was pleasantly surprised by a job offer that turned out to be just perfect for me.  The one thing that never worked . . . me looking for a job.  Somehow, when I was unhappy and went looking for jobs outside the company I worked for, it never worked out.   I learned to just trust that it would all work out and it always did, much better than I could have planned.

I was raised to want more, to learn and grow and to move up in your position.  When I was a teacher, I wanted to be an assistant director.  When I was the assistant director, I wanted to be the director.  And so on, and so on, and so on.  I have worked for the same company for almost 30 years, all of my adult life.  I have been in my current position for 14 years.  The next step up is a VP position which I have been interested in before and have even applied for twice in the last 7 years.  I'm not really interested in that position anymore and thankful someone else got the job instead of me.

That's the problem.  I have no goals for my career any more.

I never write about my job here.  It's something I don't believe in doing.  But I'm not really writing about my company or my job in this post.  It's more about where I am in my life right now.  There are a lot of people that I work with that read this blog and this is in no way related to our company.  It's ALL about me. :)

Part of it, I think, is related to turning 50.  I am looking back at my life and wondering where it went.  I feel young and I feel like I have lots of opportunity ahead of me.  But the fact is . . . it's hard to start over at 50.  And I'm locked in to a certain salary in that I have expenses and obligations and no spouse to support me.  And for the first time in my life, I don't know what I want to do.  Even if I were to leave my company and go to a whole new industry or start my own business, what would I want to do?  I can't think of anything I would want to do as a full time job.  It's kind of scary.  Something is missing.

I am not saying I'm too old to start over.  My mom was almost 60 when she started her own business.  Age has nothing to do with it.  You need a dream and a passion.  Where did my dreams and my passion go?

Things are changing right now.  But I'm a survivor.  The thing is . . . I don't want to just survive.  I want my life and my job to mean something.  I'm passionate about the people I work with and our customers but I'm not sure anymore if the position I'm in is where I need to be. 

I am reminding myself that the Universe will  take me in the direction I need to go . . . that things happen for a reason . . . that I need to trust that things are moving forward and will be better.  I am remembering and thankful that my family is safe and healthy, that I have a home, that there is much suffering in Japan, in the Middle East and so many other places and my frustrations are insignificant and temporary.

Is this a natural occurrence at a milestone birthday?  I don't remember doing it at 30 or at 40.  What are your experiences?   What changes did you make?  Are you happier?


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2 comments:

Lib Stewart said...

For everything there is a season.... I am sure that soon something will spark your interest and it may not be work related. Maybe it will be work on your home or cooking -- something creative. Maybe it will be community service -- giving back. Maybe it WILL be your job - a new project or a new opportunity. I am 10 years older than you. Right now, I find myself living in the future. I am looking forward to retirement. My husband and I have chosen to relocate then and I will go back to school and leisurely take some courses that will bring me joy (read NOT Advanced Accounting :-)). I plan to be more involved in church and in community. I can join a book group!! I, like you, love my job and the people I work with and would have a hard time giving that up. I do hear what you're saying about being in the same position for many years. That has happened to me also; but yesterday was so good - I learned a couple of new things and was able to apply them to projects and felt like I was using my brain!! Hang in there - the spark will come!

C. said...

Your frustrations aren't insignificant. They are significant to you. If money, time, etc. were not an issue, what would you like to do? Maybe going to a career counselor would help. I'm in a similar situation trying to figure things out.