Six hundred and fifty million dollars. All over America offices and factories buzzed with excitement over tonight’s MegaMillions drawing, the largest in the history of the lotto. My office was no exception as we discussed how much money it would take each of us to walk away from our current jobs. Surprisingly, my coworkers had larger #s than I expected. Some cited setting an example for their children as the ultimate motivator to continue working. My # was higher than the average, but I have also yet to buy a ticket. Part of this whole ‘poor tax’ bothers me. I suppose playing the occasional megajackpot is okay, but the habitual $100/ week players….depressing. Nevertheless, I will join the rest of society and buy my ticket – if for nothing else, than to donate to the state education system. Are you playing? What’s your walk away number?
Growing up in these here United States of America, I have always been told that one could be anything they wanted to be if they set their mind to it. Nobody said that the playing field would be equal, but this common refrain has always defined America. It is the home of opportunity, the land of the free. Now that I am in my mid-twenties, I am fairly certain that I will no longer be a professional baseball player, astronaut, or rock star. (10 year-old S.C. is heartbroken.) I bring this up not to dwell on childhood fantasies, but instead, I bring it up to discuss one’s current profession and whether that is consistent with the direction one ultimately wants to go. When work consumes 49.1% of my waking hours, it is difficult not to define myself by my current job. Most people my age and at similar points in their careers will justify their current job as a means to some dream job ending. Examine your current job or academic focus; compare that to your ultimate destination; now take a deep breath and determine whether a career (life?) pivot is in order… Eyes wide open.
Admittedly, this ‘blog’ has become more of a sounding board for my sporadic, reflective thoughts. This will be one of those posts.
The last few months have been relatively free of any negative emotion (read: anger, sadness, worry). And in these months, I have had little desire to write or drift into much deep thought. However, in typical fashion I have had some of these negative emotions surface in the last week and I have begun digging deep in the ‘thought department’. And now, I am at the point where I return to writing… Some of my best work and ideas have come when I have been in this mildly depressed state. I am not sure if many others agree with this theory, but it is much harder to write with purpose or passion when you are in a numb, apathetic state. It takes emotion to write and the numbness I have had in recent months (years?) has really impacted my ability to write or even ‘think’.
Now it’s not like I have ever had something profound to say. But at least the desire was there.. At least I felt strong enough about things (personal, social, or political) to form coherent thoughts and sentences. It’s a shame it takes feeling like shit for me to consider writing. The Gift and the Curse.
Back to the grind… Writing, reading, exercising, socializing, and being awesome. It’s amazing how much more I do these things when work doesn’t consume my life. In addition to my newly discovered work-life balance, this new city of mine has been fantastic. I’m almost settled in the new place and the roommates are pretty good guys. I finally live in a place that doesn’t look and feel like a freshman dorm room.
Since I last posted, I decided to run a marathon. I am officially registered for the Chicago Marathon which will take place in October. I have various reasons for wanting to run:
1.) I need a hobby or official activity to do outside of work. I don’t want work to be everything I do
2.) I want to get my athlete on! I miss the competition..
3.) 25 is a good age to accomplish such a difficult and memorable feat. It’s also a good age to brag about when I’m 70 years old.
Now I have never successfully run more than 4 miles in my life, but I have plenty of time and tons of motivation. Running agenda: Shamrock Shuffle in March (8k), Rock n Roll in July (half marathon), Chicago Marathon in October. This isn’t a NewYear’s resolution either. It’s a major life event and will be one of the most difficult things I have ever done. Wish me luck.
In an attempt to break up the monotony that makes up my daylight hours and fine-tune my writing skills, I have decided to write and design a simple blog. Once in awhile, I might stumble upon some amusing interweb content or post an original thought or two. Hopefully, my mornings as a financial analyst do not completely drain the creative juices out of me.
I only used the word “I” twice in my Hello World post… Pretty impressive I must say.