It wasn’t a spur of the moment act but another considered milestone in this project called ‘our lives’. Cat says “we’re reinventing our lives again”, and I love what that expression implies. This is an upgrade, an improvement – ‘Our Lives 6.0’
Before taking this step it was essential to plan ahead (6 monts old plan), including being ‘financially disciplined’ and putting money aside. This discipline will allow us to live comfortably for a few months, even if we’re unable to find any work when we move up to Noosa. Yeah, that’s right, NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSA is also part of the plan. Part is an understatement… it’s in its essence.
We have always wanted to live by the beach, but somehow we’ve continuously been able to postpone this yearning with excuses. We were doing a great job of convincing ourselves it was an unfeasible fantasy, when in truth, only our perceived fears of potential loss of comfort were stopping us. Oh, the risks we don’t take in name of the reality we know.
Not anymore. We decided to stop talking about dreams and took serious action to create the conditions necessary to turn them into reality. We decided to start our conversations with “Here’s what we can do…” instead of “Wouldn’t it be nice if we could…”
All change is born from dissatisfaction and this one is no different. I haven’t been taking pleasure from my job for some time now. I occasionally had this feeling but it was always something momentary, when things weren’t working out OK. But for more than a year however, this sensation has been ever more present and the moments of professional fulfilment have been the rare exceptions.
As a good ‘wannabe minimalist’ I started asking questions: “Do I want to do engineering work for the rest of my life?”; “Why am I still doing it? Is it because ‘Conventional Wisdom’ says I have to?”; “Am I afraid of being judged if I decide to do something else?”; “Isn’t there anything else I would like to do?”
I studied engineering for 5 years, worked on it for more than 10 and have indeed developed it into a passion – no doubt about that. During this period however, I have developed other interests that I’m also keen to nurture. I wish for both my professional and emotional CVs to be extensive and diverse.
‘To make a living’, I am keen to work as a barista. I want to learn how to make great coffee. I have concluded a barista course and feel confident in taking on the work; it’s definitely an interest I’ll try to build into a passion.
Life is full of irony, or maybe it’s just the human spirit that is never satisfied with the status quo. I made sandwiches, served drinks, waited on tables and drove a delivery van when all I wanted was to do engineering work. Now I can’t wait to start working on a blue-collar job again.
This decision is taking us out of our comfort zone and that’s where we want to be. That’s the place we’ll get to grow. This decision will permit us to surf every day, learn a 1000 new things, get involved and be part of a new community, but above all, spend more time with the girls. It is going to be tough though, we’re moving to a place where winter lasts 2 months with freezing water temperatures of 21oC.
The last couple of weeks have been quite busy and stimulating: trips to Noosa to find a place; resigning; breaking the news to friends and family; the inevitable expectations and worries that require taming; and all the anxiousness showing in the final phase of my digestive system.
Managing my parents’ expectations with this decision has been challenging. They can’t understand (and I can’t explain any better) the reasoning behind this decision… status reigns supreme in some minds. That’s the way it is and that’s OK.
I can imagine their hesitation in answering that judgementally probing question, “So, what does your kid in Australia do?” with “He makes coffee!”
Ever since becoming a parent, I came to realise that parents are harder to educate than children. I’m sure, 30 years from now, my girls will make some decisions my mind won’t be able to process.
How about you? Are you happy with your job? Do you want to do it for the rest of your life? Isn’t there anything else you’re keen to try out? You still got some time left, but not as much as you think…
Want to move to Noosa? I hear there’s great coffee there!!