This Saturday we have excellent weather here in Helsinki. Once again I understood how amazingly appealing the city can be when it wants to… I slept well, went for a morning run and in the afternoon my aunt and the family of my cousin came for a visit and we enjoyed (too much) ice cream and talked about our lives. My cousins live in Charlottesville, Washington D.C., so I see them very rarely. Luckily now they’ll spend a whole year here in Helsinki.
Talking about this and that my aunt suddenly asked me the question:
– Do you like your work?
– No, I answered – with an emphasis.
Before thinking about it, my lips had spoken. Then I started with all the explications: well, of course it’s not that bad, my colleagues are really nice and the subject in itself is very interesting, as we’re working for a better world in the NGO… It’s just the feeling that my job description does not match what I would be able to do. I feel that days pass by while doing a bit of this and that but I’m never able to engage myself thoroughly in anything. My tasks are too fragmented.
I loved the answer of my aunt: “Well, then it’s time to change”, she said placidly and then we moved on to other subjects.
Change. It seems so simple and so many people are changing their lives all the time. So what holds me back?
“Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.”
― Albert Einstein
I guess my problem is typical: I don’t know what I want. More or less yes, but not in detail. For a half a year now, I’ve been pondering a lot on what I really want from life. Not easy. However, every day I get more and more convinced that, even if there’s nothing wrong with my work or with my life, I really need to react as soon as possible. Otherwise days, months and years pass by while I’m doing something that’s “ok” but not “amazing”.
“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.”
― Lewis Carroll
Many of my friends have similar feelings this spring, so we’ve discussed the subject a lot. Everyone has a different situation but in the end it’s all about the same things. Change. I just read 10 signs it’s time to change your job I found, and I don’t fill all of them. However, many things are valid for me too, and this is only one list.
For example I know I’m not performing to the best of my ability. I’d love to do more meaningful things. I also need to get challenged a bit – with myself. Yesterday I met a friend, who also knows my colleagues, and someone had commented that I don’t seem that enthusiastic anymore at work as in the beginning. That is true, unfortunately. I never want to become cynical.
I have also looked for ways to improve the current situation but our organisation isn’t that big and there is quite a strong culture of doing things in a certain way – like in many places. So, change tends to be slow…
Sometimes I also feel that I can’t get enough positive reinforcement to keep my spirits up. This is a typical problem in Finland – lack of positive feedback. They say that everything goes well when nobody says anything.
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson
Well, here I am home alone on a Saturday evening pondering on my life and my future. Actually I’m feeling positive and peaceful, as I know the change will come and that it will be for better. These days I’ve had the necessity to spend some time with myself and my thoughts, while normally I’m a very sociable people and spend most of my free time accompanied. Now, I feel that for being able to implement wise changes in one’s life you need to stop, think a lot, imagine the future you want, make lists, mind maps or whatever. Then, some unexpected moment The Change is there and you’ll be ready for it – either it comes to you or you have found it as you knew where to look for…
“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.”
― Anaïs Nin
PS: I’ve been also reading a lot of quotes on life and change, as I like this form of concise expression (being un impatient person) and I get many inspiring ideas there. So, here I share a few.
“These woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.”
― Robert Frost