It’s been a very long time since I added to my blog. I think the truth of it is that I only really started writing because I was miserable. My life was messy and becoming mixed up in the wrong things. I begin to write again now because my life has become interesting.
This time last year I was a ‘successful’ and ‘professional’ desk monkey. Time passed, yet I had ceased to grow. To many, my life may have seemed on track, as if I was achieving goals and advancing my career. Perhaps if I was someone else I would have agreed. But I am my own man, and have my own goals and desires that are not in line with the ‘norm’.
It’s been 9 months now since I threw in the Engineering profession. In this time everything has changed, I have successfully removed the shackles that people chain themselves with (all except my car) and I now lead a very simple and happy life. I have had more experiences and met more people in this short time than in the previous 4 years combined.
I lived and worked on the Snow in Victoria for 3.5 months. I traveled inland, to Mildura, and discovered first hand just how abhorrent my country treats travelers looking for their second year visas, and how widespread the exploitation is. I left my friends in Mildura and traveled solo to Adelaide with no plan, searching for something better. I lived in Port Adelaide for a few weeks, by the water with the dolphins and jellyfish, and then in the CBD, with the urban country folk, for a few more. I met many people and experienced Adelaide for what it is, however found nothing to make me stay. Only a girl with whom to go.
We drove west. With no real plan, we drove and stopped as we pleased and saw so much of Australia which I was before completely ignorant. The sand dunes, salt lakes, deserts, rock formations, the Bunda Cliffs, the wide variety of sea life and so much more, until we landed in Fremantle. As far west as anyone can get in this country. Here in Fremantle is where our journey takes its leave. But not the adventure. We traveled north to the Pinnacles and for snorkeling, we traveled south to Margaret River and a series of caves further south again. I found a job I enjoy, with a boss I respect and peers I enjoy the company of. I clean pools now, and live in my favorite place in Australia. For a while at least.
Who knows what comes next. For now I am happy and settled. In two weeks I travel to Bali and in 2 months, with the sad departure of my travel buddy, I take a trip to Thailand. What a journey it has been so far. One I will write about. In the hope that a few of you readers might follow my own steps, in your own way, and throw in your careers for an uncertain adventure. I wont be the one wishing I took that risk or did that thing when I lay on my death bed, and I hope you wont either.
Over three weeks ago I watched this TED talk which inspired me to think harder about some of the things in my life that I am grateful for. Three weeks ago when I first posted on the topic of gratefulness I found it quite difficult to come up with three things. Times have been dark lately. This time however it seems much easier. Things are looking up, more so every day, and as such I get to pick three things that stand out among a much longer list of things I am grateful for. So here it goes again.
Three (more) Things I Am Grateful For
1. The Snow
In just over a month now I make my way up to Falls Creek, where I get to stay for the entire Snow Season! This, coming from an 8:30 – 5:00 desk job nearly 2 hours travel from home is such an enormous and welcome change. The reality of the situation has not hit home, and likely wont until I get there. I get to spend every day outside on the snow and among people. Even if I am to work full time hours, I gain a minimum of 4 hours to myself everyday to have fun, be social and work on myself. I can’t wait.
Had I not failed, and fallen as far behind as I have, I may never had made the decision to escape the professional trap and start my life journey. Now, although I don’t know what comes after Falls Creek, I am determined to do everything in my power to really live my life. Because we only have one. Ask yourself, is your life boring? Or is it an adventure? I am also grateful for the debt I found myself in, which is now nearly gone. Having so much debt has really hammered home the value of money. Fact is the significant majority of mine has been spent on things that have actually been harmful to myself. Now I can really begin working on becoming a wealthy man.
3. My Education
We really are exceptionally privileged in Australia. It can be hard to understand when this is the only way we ever experience life. I have received a top notch (though it never seems so at the time) education. Now I also have further education in the form of real world experience. Although I am now choosing to leave the profession I educated for, I do not regret my schooling in it at all. Conversely, I found that University really taught me how to think for myself, and ask the right questions. When faced with something I do not understand, I have all the tools available to me to investigate and learn about the subject. It is no longer a matter of what can I do, but what do I want to do. I have the resources at my disposal to do anything.
Thankfully this wasn’t so hard this time. Next time, I expect it to be easier again. Next time I will be on my snowboard. Almost every day.
TED is telling me to do things again! *Sound the Alarm!*
I’m not ignorant of the fact that being successful isn’t the key to happiness. I have discovered that now. Being happy comes from somewhere else. Somewhere really distant and confusing. Typing “happy” into Google at the moment turns up a video of Pharrell, and lets face it, it’s impossible to listen to that song and not 🙂 smile 🙂 at least a little bit. So obviously, the key to happiness is listening to Pharrell Williams all day, every day. Right?
Well damn TED seems to insist that to be happy, there is work involved. Work that I am prepared to commit to consider committing too so long as I can be bothered. I have to be honest, I seem to get better and better at picking things up and putting them down 2 minutes later. The fact that this blog has now been going for nearly a month is astounding. Who are you weirdos that keep reading my stuff?
I’m not going to try and achieve all of the things recommended in the Video, because I’m just not that committed. But! I will try and list three things I am grateful for over the last week. So here it goes.
Three Things I Am Grateful For
Part of my “new life” (Matt V3.0) includes making myself easily discoverable online by my real name, and making sure I keep contact with people that I unfortunately may no longer talk to, or have simply just lost contact with. A simple exercise such as creating a new Facebook page and adding back all of the people I know has really made me aware of just how many friends I have. It has already put me back into contact with so many people I haven’t talked to for years. So if you’re reading this from Facebook, and we haven’t spoken in a gigayear, say hi. I would love to chat.
Besides being irresistibly delicious. Kebabs have become a welcome lunchtime routine. Every day except Fridays me and my work mate, Mr Infaz, take a 500m stroll to get a kebab from Mums Kebabs and discuss anything life, politics, money, religion etc: A temporary escape from the trivial stresses of work, right in the middle of every day.
Do I need to explain? Apparently there is a strange sub-breed of human that don’t drink coffee. Honestly. I don’t know how I would survive without coffee. Even if it has to be bad coffee. Too often I find myself up way too late at night telling myself that I will sleep when i’m dead, until it gets to the morning, and then I feel like I may be a lot closer to death then I realize. Until I get a coffee. Then everything is OK.
That was surprisingly hard. The three things I came up with seem quite pathetic too (except Facebook. Facebook really has been amazing). But I guess I am grateful for them. So there they are. Welcome to my pathetic gratitudes. Hopefully I can come up with something better and post again next week. Oh Internet. How you destroy me.