Some perspective on finding direction

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I’ve switched what I want to do with my life a few times over the past 10 years. From managing a store, to trades, to business, to healthcare to music production. It can be hard to not feel guilty for not having stuck with anything. The truth is, nothing has really peaked my interest so much that I feel like actively pursuing it. Things tend to hold my attention for a few weeks, and then die off as I realize it’s not really something I’m into.

Well, I’m on to my next big thing, and it feels a little different this time. That thing would be electrical engineering. Usually when I come up with ideas for what I want to do with myself, I’m mostly thinking about the end goal more so then the progress in between. I haven’t found anything where I’ve genuinely been interested in the process. Building a business is the closest thing that came to interest in the time spent learning, but even then it felt more like a means to an end.

The past week I’ve been consuming tutorials on how electricity works, and I’m fascinated! I’ve been literally jumping up out of my seat in excitement over what I learn (My cats think I’m crazy!). I don’t recall ever feeling this much interest in anything in my entire life. It’s not just about building an Iron Man suit eventually (How cool would that be?!). It’s actually really cool just to learn all the little pieces of information I’ve been researching. I learned how transistors work and how they’re made a few days ago, and I was totally amazed by the genius of the people who designed them. It wasn’t my regular “Okay, just need to focus long enough to learn something” haze that I usually go through when I’m learning about something. It was more of a “Holy shit this is cool!” sort of feeling the whole way through. I watched some videos more then once because I found it so interesting.

Woah, take it easy now. I haven’t felt this excited since I was starting to get into music production awhile back. I’m having a hard time not saying to myself “You were just as excited about music, and that lasted how long? Two, maybe three weeks? It’s just another phase that will quickly pass.” I have to remind myself that this is worth trying out, and no amount of guilt is going to help me find what I’m looking for in life. Even if my interest peters out, I have to at least try it to see if it’s really what I want.

So I’m doing my best not to be hard on myself for my past interests, and just let the excitement I feel be a motivator to continue in this passion. I have to let go of those failures to launch, and focus on the here and now. What if this is the thing I’ve always wanted and just never knew it, and it just took multiple failures and tries to figure that out? This could change everything about the way I live my life, should I give that up because I’ve felt this excited before and given up before? No way! Besides the fact that I should keep trying things out until something sticks, this feels a lot more right then my previous attempts at pursuit of passion.

I wanted to be writer, I really thought I did. This was mostly because it just comes a little more natural for me to do. The problem is even though it comes natural to me, it doesn’t necessarily always feel enjoyable. If anything I think it’s more of a release then a hobby or passion. The muse will come and go as she pleases, and I don’t have much energy to chase her around. I like writing, but that’s about it. I think more about the fame and money and accomplishment of writing books then I do of actually sitting down to write.

Trades, meh. Challenging yes, but not really interesting to me all that much.

Healthcare was more of a pipe-dream I think. That’s one where I really had to lie to myself and say “This is what I want to do!”. I was more interested in the respect gained in being a healthcare provider, the big paycheque, and the challenge of the complexity. The problem is I wasn’t all that driven to learn about anatomy. It sounds interesting for sure, just not that “I NEED TO DO THIS” sort of interesting I think is necessary in having a passion.

Music production, another thing that I was more interested in the end result then actually learning how to do it.

Managing a store? The title sounds cool, the paycheck sounds cool, but dealing with shitty people all the time? Fart on that.

Lastly business. This was more of a middle ground for me. I was, and am still, interested in business. I have moderate interest in learning the tricks of the trade. In that I would have more interest in the process if it had some sort of end-goal in mind. I could probably muster up enough interest in marketing to learn it well if I had a project I felt was worth selling. I think this will be something I will poke at more in my later life after I’ve learned more about the world, and am ready to start creating big things.

I bring all these things up because I had sort of an a-ha moment just now. Even though I tried all of these things out, it doesn’t mean that I’ve failed in not pursuing them right now. These things might all tie into what is really burning inside me at the moment; Learning about electronics.

What if I end up going to school for electrical engineering, become the best that I can at it, really engulf myself in the learning of advanced electronics. What if I then decide that I want to manufacture medical devices to help people? Good thing I already had somewhat of an interest in medicine. What if I decide to design cool musical production stuff? There’s my musical interest coming into play. If I have to write technical papers, or even just explain things to other engineers or CEO’s, well it’s a good thing I’m good at writing! And it’s a good thing I study business on and off all the time, as that information will be useful when I invent something and decide to market it to the public.  I will need to be good at managing people if I run a company selling electronic devices. And of course I’ll need to be mechanically inclined to build everything.

So have I really failed at everything I’ve tried? Or have I just planted seeds that may one day mature into strong cedar? I don’t know, of course I don’t know. I’m sure we’ve all heard something along the lines of “Life will set its own path for you no matter how much you try to control it.” What I do know is that perspective changes everything about how you view the world. I could see these past interests as a complete failing in character, but I think instead, I will see these “failures” as stepping stones to a brighter future. Hope is a powerful thing, and feels a whole lot better then distress and misery.

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