Friday, August 17, 2007

Reevaluation

There’s something about moving (and, of course, the associated breakup) that puts me in a reminiscent mood, and makes me reevaluate my life in its present state and freak out at how poorly it matches my vision of where I want to be. Okay, freak out is a pretty strong statement, but honestly, I’ve been realizing more and more intensely recently how important it is that I get back on the right track with my life. Here I am specifically talking about my career, which is definitely in the wrong place.

I’m listening to GrooveLily right now, and just picked this line out of the song: “It’s hard when you see someone else live your dreams.” That line definitely hits home with me. I recently joined LinkedIn at the request of my manager, who has taken a new job and wants to stay in touch. Naturally, I set about searching for old acquaintances to see if I could reconnect with anybody. I found the profile an old friend from highschool and discovered that he is now a geospatial analyst, and has been for three years. Now, I don’t really want to be a geospatial analyst, but seeing that really made me stop to think. I graduated from high school with this person. He is now a geospatial analyst. I am working in an administrative job in a field I know I don’t belong in, making half as much money as I did when I was 18.

I’m better than this. I am nowhere near the point in my career or professional development that I had always assumed I would be by now. Granted, I have taken the scenic route to my educational goals – I graduated from college 6 1/2 years after I graduated from high school. That would be fine, except for the fact that I also got lured on a major detour (major in size and subject) and never got back to the main road that I knew led to the field I wanted to be a part of. Sure, my anthropology degree was fun, sure I learned a lot, but when it comes right down to it, it was not an environmental science degree, and it does not get me a job in the environmental science field, which is what I’ve always known I wanted. It’s hard to see people like my high school friend, who pursued a degree and then got a job in the field and are presumably busy being successful and satisfied. It’s also hard to see people, like another friend of mine, who are actively pursuing an education with specific career goals in mind, and are making steady progress toward those goals.

So, I have decided to finally start making progress again myself. I am taking post-bac classes (starting with the economics class I just finished) with the aim of getting into grad school in the next year or two, in an environmental science program (perhaps this one?) that will feed my brain and my heart and my soul and help me find and do the work I know I want to do. I am excited to be getting back into school, but also frustrated that I can only take one class at a time, given the need to work to make money to live and pay for school. I just have to keep reminding myself that I am doing what I can, and that I am on the right path again. And I am also actively searching for well-paying part-time jobs in just about any environmental field (yeah, I know, good luck), to get me working in the field and leave me more time for studying. Wish me luck on that one! :}

Reevaluation is tough. But it’s good to define goals and move towards them.

1 comment:

Trish said...

Lovely to have you back and posting again! You are wise to take honest stock and then move into action. One can be much happier just moving in the right direction, even if it might not aways be at the speed of daydreams. What a great looking program - I can so see you working in that area and loving it!

Trish