Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Calling

I’ve always wondered what my purpose in life was. I mean we always feel like we’re meant for great things in life; the next napoleon or the next Virginia Woolf. The reality is we go to college filled with dreams of the future, graduate college having our big dreams filled with lots of hot air, get a bad job and keep thinking I’m gonna do this and that jump to the next best thing, or get a good job from the start. And then, you either feel you have made an achievement and that’s it, or you feel like you need to advance like a rocket.

At some point after you’re working your ass off, you get swamped up at work. Barely having a social life, and barely being able to manage a healthy lifestyle, you end up too crammed to think about anything but all those things that already exist in your life right now. The dream balloons deflate. C’est la vie!

In another year or two when you hit 25 or even pass it (I haven’t even hit 24 btw but it is way too close for comfort), you start thinking what have I done for my life so far? Is this what I want? Am I happy? Am I heading for that place where I thought and wanted to be heading for? I think very few people are content with their answers for the above. Those who are should consider themselves very lucky. Those who haven’t asked those questions should consider themselves kinda stupid in not making a personal status report! In my opinion, the most important task anyone should do at a life checkpoint is to look back and start gathering all the lessons learned, and start comparing! Compare yourself when you were a kid and wanted to be an astronaut to yourself now working a desk job for example, compare yourself when one of your teachers tell you that you should go into a career of writing and go into a career of engineering instead (that’s me, find your own comparison :) ), and compare yourself to what you think your parents were expecting you to grow up to be because parents have the best expectations. Once you’re done comparing and figuring out where and how your life went wrong. You should start figuring out the tough part… your calling!

I know it sounds quasi-religious. I believe that a person has a certain calling in life. Something that they are meant to do, are going to do it perfectly, are going to excel at it, and are going to be extremely happy doing it. At their calling, they will be successful, achieved, satisfied, and they would have lives outside of it! Okay, I’m dreaming! But why is it so hard to conceive that a person was really meant to do something so greatly, almost artistically? I’m not saying it’s going to be easy or trivial or instant talent, hard work will be needed. But it would be so much better to work hard at something that comes from the soul than for a desk or a boss or a company.

My calling? I still haven’t figured it out. At some point I thought it was math then I discovered that I’m not as good at it as I thought I was so I turned to academia (my mom always wanted me to be college staff) but then I lost interest in studying really. I even tried to do a masters degree, thought of it as my chance to invent something doing the thesis, but ended up flunking (because I was too busy and uninterested to study) and thus forgetting about the whole thing and dismissing it as a waste of time. Once I started my career in testing, I knew this was IT! I loved testing, still love it. I am good at it, I like to read in it, I even like to write about it. But then the job got the better of me to the degree that I thought I would hate it. So far I still love it but I hate the way it is approached and done and dealt with in so many different places. How it is ridiculed at times or dismissed and how people conceive my work which I think is the height of creativity as boring and systematic. So maybe testing is my calling? I think it might be but I will have to fix the circumstances to make sure it is in fact my calling. And finally, I am exploring writing all over again ( my teachers said I was good back in school, wonder if I still am) and maybe it would be it. God knows it satisfies me. I can even go to the extent of saying that it gives me peace. So I am waiting for the day I write my first good short story, and the day I write my first good novella, and I dream about the day I publish my first novel :)

At least I have an idea, have you heard your calling?

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