I am still 27, I still don’t know what Wally has been hiding from all these years but I am twice as experienced at 2017 than I was last time we spoke.
What I’ve come to realise in that (admittedly modest) period of self-reflection is that I’m not looking to re-invent myself entirely. I’m not looking to change the person I am. I’m just looking to make some changes to the balance of things.
The tilting of my work/life balance further and further towards work has been a gradual change. I can’t pinpoint the exact moment that it became ‘wrong’ but I know when the process started. Just over a year ago I was pulled into a crisis team to help finish a major project. This was working at a more senior level than I had been so I saw it as a good opportunity. I didn’t mind putting the long hours in. As the year has gone on though, the project has finished and the opportunities I had pictured never quite seemed to materialise.
Some time after the project had finished, I was offered a promotion to one of a couple of jobs but this felt like an afterthought. It felt like it was a box being ticked, rather than an action that had any regard for me as an individual. I’m not looking for sympathy here, It’s the corporate world, I’m not a special little snowflake. Just trying to expand on what I meant when I said I want to do things on my terms.
The whole situation has got me thinking that I need more of a plan. Tough to engage on my terms if even I have no idea what they are! This probably doesn’t strike many of you as a big deal but it’s not something I’ve ever really done before. I haven’t yet got a concrete plan (I suspect it’ll never end up that solid), but I know now that there is a plan shaped hole that needs exploring. Baby steps.
Previously, so as as I have had a plan for work, it has been ‘Do well, get paid’ and on this alone I’ve not been unsuccessful. I’ve come to realise that this isn’t enough. I don’t want to go full Millenial demanding free food and bean bags, but I have some idea of what I do want. Namely a job that suits me as an individual, and I would like something that has a purpose I can appreciate. Wishful thinking? Time will tell.
On the same theme of planning, I’ve noticed a trend amongst my friends to do less and less spontaneously. I’ll talk another time about the people who tell me they wish they could be more spontaneous. I suspect some of my friends have been annoyed over the last couple of days with the amount of things I’ve tried to arrange. The goal here isn’t all that profound, I want to spend less weekends/evenings sat at home. Seems a pretty simple fix in theory.
As things stand, I’ve got plans for this weekend and the third weekend of January. I have not yet found anything for next weekend, but as a result of looking I have stumbled into plans for a weekend in February that I possibly wouldn’t have otherwise. Will I get more out the more I put in? Or will diminishing returns kick in? Only one way to find out.
I’ve often said that there is no point complaining about something that you have the power to change. I guess this is the outline of what I want to change and also the start of making it so.