I grew up in a small town in Minnesota, whose population was under 500.
At age 18, I went to college. A small state university in a town with a population of about 15,000.
At age 20, I decided to major in political science, with the goal of going to law school and becoming an attorney.
At age 22, in my final semester, I chose to write about video games in my spare time. I got paid to write for various websites (and once for a magazine!) and decided I wanted to try that instead of law school.
And over the next 10 months: I graduated with a Political Science degree, moved back to my parent’s place, got a job in San Francisco, quit writing (because of the job), moved halfway across the country, got fired from that job, went back into freelance writing, and got a job in retail.
By age 24, I was a year into my retail experience and was fed up. It was frustrating, boring, and showed a clear dead end.
By age 25, I started figuring it out. I fell into the Choose Yourself culture. I started feeling better. I was more enthusiastic (both at work and outside it). I was getting job interviews left and right. And while I could never close it out and get an offer, I was getting recognized by companies and people that severely outclassed me. But it didn’t matter because I was on the up-and-up.
Then I got lazy.
I was able to grasp the changes around me. For the first time, I became fully aware of them. And my response was to stop pushing myself. I was confident that I could put my life on auto-pilot and everything would be okay.
By age 26, I was still finding opportunities, but they were much less common and much less appealing.
And by age 28, I found myself back where I was at 24: Frustrated, unchallenged, and with nowhere to go.
I got tired of feeling that way.
There are three potential feelings you get when you look back on the happiest period of your life:
- Deep-rooted nostalgia for a time that literally may be half a lifetime ago.
- Disappointment for choices made in recent times.
- A proud look around at life right now.
I was firmly on point 2. And it was heart breaking. My happiest point was so recent, I felt I could touch it.
I decided to turn life around, once again.
I rebooted my blog. I cleaned up life distractions. I took vow to disconnect from things and people that wear me down (or if I can’t, at least minimize interactions). And I made a point to get a little better every day.
It won’t always happen. There will be slip-ups.
But it feels amazing to be back on track.