Why I’m Letting Others Decide My Life (Part 2)
“Oh, The Places You’ll Go!”
Last year I sold all of my possessions, packed my life into two bags and watched the country I grew up in disappear beneath the cloud line. It was the beginning of the first mission for www.whatshouldbazdo.com, but the site didn’t even exist yet – only the idea. I didn’t know where I was going with it, but I was on my way.
It all began when my younger cousins asked me for advice about what they should do following school. Being a teacher, and having a tendency to think and live outside the box, I figured, “Instead of telling them, why not show them what is possible – anything!”
Sitting on the plane, I felt both the exhilaration and remorse of stripping myself back to the bare essentials: two arms; two legs; memories; experience; and a heartbeat. I was human again, my possessions did not define me. Only my personal characteristics – accumulated from environments and people I’d grown up around – could define who I was anymore.
As I Reclined half an inch in the economy class seat, a couple of things occurred to me: that everything I possessed was now folded up and packed away in a couple of bags stowed in the cargo bay beneath my feet; and that should my luggage be lost in transit, I would literally have nothing to show for my 27 years but for the clothes on my back.
This flight to London was the beginning of something more than just a holiday. It had been in the making – one way or another – for over 18 months, but I had only bought tickets the week before. I felt completely unprepared… And this is precisely why I couldn’t wipe the smile from my face!
“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself in any direction you choose” – Dr Seuss
The Adventure Begins
The adventure so far has taken me to London, teaching secondary & primary schools; private & public; schools for the gifted & schools for the troubled. And to India, observing and mentoring teachers from a completely different culture and environment to my own, allowed me to reflect on what is missing from Australian and English education. I’ve learned invaluable lessons about my profession – by NOT focusing on my profession.
“I’ve learned invaluable lessons about my profession – by NOT focusing on my profession”
[column width=”38%” padding=”1%”]The story has lead me into the Austrian mountains (and swimming in her freezing rivers). It has tested my patience as I learn how to design and maintain a website. And it has tested my physical resilience with yoga challenges, sleeping in the cold, and running 32Km of obstacles in the English countryside.
Along the way, I’ve been able to leave a positive impact on people’s lives and the environment through charity events and challenges.
Things are only just getting started.[/column][column width=”58%” padding=”1%”]
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I have brains in my head, and feet in my shoes… And I will steer myself in any direction YOU choose!
It is okay to be different. In fact it can be liberating, and sometimes frightening – but you know you are alive.
A lot of teens seem to finish school and, as a result of the dictates of society, think that they basically have two options: Do an apprenticeship, or do a university degree – whether they like it or not. When neither of those options appeal to the young adult, they can often feel like they have failed at life, or they somehow don’t measure up to the guy who “always wanted to be a doctor.” I believe this is simply untrue.
I think that most people have had somebody tell them that they could grow up to do or be anything they wanted to, but at the same time their dreams are being stifled by “be realistic” and “you can’t make any money doing that”
I feel this attitude contributes toward low self-esteem, depression, and even suicide in teenagers.
I want to prove to young people that the old adage is true: “Anything IS possible, as long as you can focus your efforts on that one thing, (and be willing to sacrifice some things that get in the way of that dream.)
I also want to demonstrate that life isn’t all about the milestones you are MEANT to reach according to society’s rules. i.e. primary school; high school; university or apprenticeship; career ladder; buy a house; marry someone (before you’re 30!); have some kids; work; work; work; retire;… die.
I want to show that it is possible to live a full and successful life without necessarily following these rules. It is okay to be different. In fact it can be liberating, and sometimes frightening – but you know you are alive.