The other day, I was browsing a few discussions online. I read one specific discussion about a guy that was dumped by his girlfriend because she thought he wasn’t going anywhere in life. He now has a masters in accountancy, works for a Fortune 50 company, and is making $70K+. It would almost sound as if the girl made a mistake or bad assumption about him, but some did not see it that way. They felt that his ex-girlfriend may have had a different idea of what “going somewhere” meant. Where is he going personally, creatively, or emotionally? He has the job and the money, but does he really have the life? Soon after, another person’s response to the discussion caught my attention.
This will probably be buried in the older comments, but just hear me out man..
I got my computer science degree and was hired by a fairly large company right out of college as a software engineer. I make an income comparable to yours and I get to travel overseas a few times a year for work. I am 30 now and have been working here for 7 years.
I made the mistake of letting a career determine where I was headed. I used my career as an excuse to forget the rest of my life goals and dreams. You end up making a good salary, but yet you end up paycheck to paycheck because you buy into consumerism, rack up bills and probably have a mortgage.
If you are in a similar case, then your ex was right. You are going nowhere. Why? Because you are already there. You have chosen your path of a career man and that is what you have to look forward to for the next 30 years.
While some people strive for this type of thing, a lot of us don’t. Do I really find it enjoyable to spend my days in an office working for someone else? I saw where I was headed. When I looked into the future I saw myself driving to the office everyday. You know how damn depressing that is?
Then I realized I actually have a choice. I sold my townhouse and saved up a bunch of money. This year I’m taking a break from the corporate world for a while to chase down some dreams.
I’m just saying it’s quite possible this is what your ex meant when she said you were going nowhere.
After reading this, my mind went completely blank. Suddenly it wasn’t about the guy and his ex-girlfriend anymore, it was about me. For the past two years I have been studying Computer Science at one of the top engineering schools in the nation thinking that graduating meant instant success and guaranteed life happiness. I’m not worried about finding a job after graduating; the economy needs engineers and scientists. The problem is, I have spent this whole time thinking that I’ll get a great job, make a ton of money and just magically be happy for the rest of my life. I worked for both Circuit City and Best Buy, repairing computers for the past five years. I felt happy working for them at first, but as the years passed, I started to feel more like a slave. I wasn’t happy anymore. Because of this, I had this mindset that being a programmer or software engineer for a big company would be far more rewarding and would make me happy. But the question is, what guarantee do I have that I won’t become a slave again? After thinking about it, I’ve come to realize that I have have no guarantee. I have no assurance. I have nothing.
That doesn’t mean I don’t have a plan though. I’ve always had the same plan, but I’ve come to accept that it isn’t as concrete as I thought it was. My degree is important. It’s my priority and I will not give it up. I need to earn this for myself, as well as my family. My mom blessed my with this wonderful life, it’s only fair to give back and assure her that she can life the rest of her life in peace. After that is done, I will focus on my life. I will create life goals and dreams for myself and follow them. Just wait, one day I’m going to play a role in helping the world through the use of software and computing, and in return, the world is going to give back to me by allowing me to live my life in true happiness.