Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Decisions, decisions (while blindfolded)

How does a person make a major decision about their life? What sorts of thoughts and feelings should be brought to bear when one is at such a crossroads? How zealous should one be about their work, and how should work be weighted with the rest of their life? What is important and what would a balanced situation be between working to live versus living to work? I suppose this not only varies for each person, but also changes with regard to the circumstances and environment surrounding each person as they move through life.

Though I have a number of options I'm still looking into for my next bout of employment, or at least I think I have them as options-it's hard to know for sure, I do not really know how I would go about making this decision if I actually knew that all of them were on my plate this very day.

Do not burn yourselves out. Be as I am. A reluctant enthusiast and part-time crusader. A half-hearted fanatic. Save the other half of yourselves for pleasure and adventure. It is not enough to fight for the West. It is even more important to enjoy it while you can, while it’s still there. So get out there, hunt, fish, mess around with your friends, ramble out yonder and explore the forests, encounter the Griz, climb a mountain, bag the peaks, run the rivers, breathe deep of that yet sweet and elusive air. Sit quietly for a while and contemplate the precious stillness of the lovely, mysterious, and awesome space. Enjoy yourselves. Keep your brain in your head and your head firmly attached to the body, the body active and alive. And I promise you this one sweet victory over our enemies, over those desk-bound people with their hearts in safe deposit boxes and their eyes hypnotized by their desk calculators. I promise you this: you will outlive the bastards.
–Edward Abbey

That sounds like a good proposition, Ed. Now how do I find the balance? It would be nice to not throw the baby out with the bath water.


Rachel B said...

Tell me about it...I'm also seeking employment, and it's liberating in a way, but sometimes so many choices and possible directions can be burdensome...buena suerte, friend.

Eric said...

I wish I would get fired, terminated, dismissed, set free.
I make a comfortable living but I hate my job. I had the
Opportunity once to do what was in my heart but oh no
I did what was in my head. Now I am comfortable screwed.
Edward Abbey is absolutely correct. Yet remember there comes
A time you cant set yourself free.

EthanG said...

Bon chance to you as well. I guess the uncertainty of life is part of what makes living interesting.

I definitely empathize with you. My circumstances are different than yours, but I often find myself just wishing to hear that some of the long-lingering applications from which haven't received any significant communication from potential employers would just definitively turn me down. How much effort/money/time does it take to just send an email communicating "No thanks, try again."? Anyhow, maybe that's just me wishing to dodge the responsibility of having to walk away from certain things of my own volition. Even though a lot about the last however long in my life has (frankly) sucked, there are still plenty of things (big and small) that are worthwhile and beautiful and alive. I've been thinking of the scene in the movie "American Beauty" a lot lately; the one where the young videographer is filming a plastic bag blowing around and around in an eddy of the wind by a building or something. It's been a long time since I've seen the movie, but that seems to encapsulate to me how beauty is there if you choose to see it. Those are my $0.02, for what they're worth.

Lilly said...

After a number of exasperating job hunts, I came to the conclusion that the concept of "critical mass" applies in the highest degree to that process. Until you have about 50 applications out in the world, nothing will happen, after that you get the ketchup effect!

Are you on Twitter yet? Mr G has joined (!) and is calling himself "GreatDismal".
You can find me at LillyLyle.

EthanG said...

Yeah, I've floated loads of applications. It feels like something needs to happen soon that makes the way clear that I should follow.

I'm not on Twitter, as I don't own a phone to maintain the persistent virtual presence that particular medium seems to require.

Becky said...

Well, I've done what I loved and made no money, made some money-never a lot and found my job boring, even when I enjoyed the actual work itself, decided to be proactive in making a change and ended up feeling unemployable in at least two fields, out a sizable chunk of change to boot.
You can only go with the choices you have in front of you at the moment. It's not out of line to call and ask what happening with your application, so you can find out where you stand. In this economy you could do much worse than another stint on the Ice-returning to a more open job market with a nice savings account.

Lilly said...

Ethan, Twitter doesn't require a fancy mobile, I access it from the internet. Nor does it require constant updates - some of my contacts only add something once a week or so. It is a stream of thoughts and impressions from people you choose yourself, you can dip into it when you feel like it.

I was intrigued that you also were struck by the odd beauty of the plastic bag blowing about in American Beauty. It was in fact what I liked best, and remember best, from that film.

Lilly said...

In case you ever forget why you want to go into Space: