In life, it is not necessarily what happens to us that matters. Usually, it is the perception of what happens to us that matters. Changing the outside world does not mean your inner world will change. If you move it will not magically make your life complete.
While in University I hated class. Partly because I was a closet nerd that tried to fit in. Partly because I was not engaged at all; I perceived what came after college was unhappiness. I looked at friends and family ahead of me in life and no one seemed thrilled about waking up Monday morning. I wanted to wake up thrilled it was Monday. While working in procurement I HATED Monday mornings. I have said it before but I will say it again. I have come to learn that it wasn’t the job that was the problem. It was my perception of the job that needed tweaking.
Life Timeline: University — Procurement Job — Unhappy and quit — insert my story below
Move to San Diego = Problems Disappear!
During/after university I wanted to move to San Diego. Instead, I took a position at a corporation. On day one I wanted out and was never engaged. Once again, I have come to find out that it was not the job that was the problem. It was my relationship to it. San Diego was still stuck in my head and almost two years after joining the “corporate grind” I decided to quit.
I moved to San Diego because I never did after college. The beach, perfect weather, and surfing would instantly cure my work-life relationship. I had a blast, but the vacation allure wore off; QUICKLY. I was on a mission to be fulfilled and I didn’t want an endless vacation. I realized my relationship to my next job in San Diego would be no different because the internal work had not been done. Naive for sure, but reading or lectures could not have taught me this life lesson. Real world experience was the only cure.
“Life teaches you how to live it—if you live long enough.” Tony Bennett in Amy
Coachable Moment: There is a recurring theme that keeps circling me and I am one hundred percent sure you understand. Problems/obstacles are part of life. Do not move to South Korea and think your problems will disappear. Some things will be easier in South Korea which I was not expecting. However, some simple tasks we take for granted at home will be near impossible. A prime example would be setting up a bank account or getting your cell phone set up. Plan as much as you feel necessary, but know unexpected daily obstacles will occur. Korean surprises are everywhere. Expect the unexpected.
Cayucos Beach California Sunset December 2014
Relatable story from How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Andrew Carnegie:
“A man’s son took a trip to Florida to clear his head. As the boy was leaving his father handed him a letter. More wretched in Florida than home; he opened the letter. “Dear son, you are 1,500 miles from home and you do not feel any different do you?” I knew you wouldn’t because you took with you the one thing that is the cause of all your problems; YOURSELF. Not your body or your mind. It is not what has happened to you. It is what you think of those experiences. As a man thinketh in his heart he shall be.
Here I was wanting to change the whole world and everything in it when all that needed changings was the focus of the lens of the camera that was my mind.”
My Personal Journal
Copied from an article in 2014. Notice it took 2 years for me to connect the dots and make the jump
37 Things Dying People Say They Regret Learn From It Before It Is Too Late
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.” -Steve Jobs
One of the primary principles of Stoic philosophy involves focusing on only what you can control; your thoughts and effort. I knew my effort could improve. Also, I made a subtle change in thinking about my problems as obstacles.
Armed with a new way to look at life(still dip back to the old ways often) I knew the necessary life choice was ACTION. Moving to South Korea gave me the time and space to break myself down and then build myself up. Hope that South Korea allows you the similar opportunities like the one below.