Rob's World

Archive for August, 2013

How does anyone decide? (Or “Life needs a manual”)

by on Aug.01, 2013, under Uncategorized

In grade school.. everyone asks what you want to be when you grow up. I never had an answer.. I figured I’d have a better idea once I was in college.

In college, everyone asks what you want to study to be.. I had no idea.. I studied everything that was even slightly interesting (math, physics, chemistry, biology, music, mythology, computation.. among others).. finally, when forced to choose, I ended up in computer science because I was naturally good at it. I never really had to study it or think about it too much.. it just came naturally to me.

Now.. I look back.. and I have spent 15 or so years in the job of “computers” (as I like to say) and I still have NO idea what I want to do. What do I currently do? I am the global expert/resource for an enterprise collaboration tool. Partners/Customers/Product Management/Sales folks/etc all come to me to learn how to best utilize the tool, how to extend it, to teach other show to use and customize it and how to sell it. It’s kind of neat being the one guy in the world who gets emails from all over Europe/Asia/Australia/the America’s.. but it’s not something that inspires me or that I find truly compelling. (Possibly as it comes so easy to me).

Outside of work.. I have a myriad of hobbies and larger time sinks.. on the hobby side are skiing and scuba diving. More time consuming than those is automotive endeavors (I have a 99 Miata that is track prepped for Track days/PDX events that I take to various race tracks, and I do all my own wrenching (sometimes with help from a friend or two) including suspension, exhaust, safety work to the car in addition to all maintenance. )

In the MUCH larger time sink I have Ultimate Frisbee. I don’t just play the sport (just got back from Master’s Nationals) but I also serve on the board of directors for the local non-profit that runs/supports Ultimate in the DC area.
On top of that I am the “Tournament Director” for 3 large events throughout the year (the smallest is 30 teams of 25 or so individuals from across the country/Canada and the UK; the largest is up to 50 teams from all over the country) These events and the work on the board of directors takes up a ton of my free time as there is always more to do.
If all of that wasn’t enough, I have an AMAZING wife that puts up with all of this (as well as with me), a dog that is only happy if he is attached to my side at all times, and an almost 4 month old son who is absolutely incredible.
With all of this (and trust me, I realize how good i have it) I just can’t stay “happy”. I haven’t found my “calling”. I haven’t figured out what I want to do when I grow up yet.

I wish I knew.. each day I get older, and yet each day it feels less likely that I’ll find what I should do when I grow up other than continue to spread myself as this as possible across all of my obligations/hobbies/etc.
Life needs a manual.

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