Saturday, September 23, 2017

Where Do You See Yourself Five Years From Now?

Lying on sand, sun on my face, listening to the waves, my family nearby, anytime I want to.

I teach face to face classes and online classes. I design and write eLearning. I prefer online teaching so I don't need to travel to school. I teach from home, in my pajama bottoms. Of course, I wear half a business attire. I am a professional. :-)

I am currently teaching Business Communications face to face. Part of the syllabus is preparing my students for interviews. I started by giving them the most common interview questions. My normal teaching process is: demonstrate, let the students try out, and then get the students to do it on their own. I started answering the questions to demonstrate how it is done. Everything went well until I got to: "Where do you see yourself five years from now?".

I broke down, fell on the floor, and bawled my eyes out in front of 18 students. Haha. Nah, I didn't. But it got me thinking, thinking real hard. Where do I see myself five years from now? Do I see myself still working twelve hour days, teaching and writing? Do I see myself living in the same city, driving the same car, doing the same things, spending the same amount of money? I know these are not the things that the interview question is really asking but that's where my mind went.

I am in my early 40's. Five years is not a long time. Our 13 years in Canada zipped by like a blink. What if the next five years passed by and my life is still exactly the same, except that I am older, nearly fifty. Waaaah!

I do have a good life. All our basic needs are met, plus I have good health, a rewarding job, great husband, awesome kids, happy family. Why did that question scare me? What do I want to happen in the next five years? What exactly am I looking for?

The eternally curious teacher in me opted to research. If I have everything I need right now, what else do I want? It led me to the most basic and highly criticized concept - Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs. I believe that's the answer. I am now looking for self-actualization. Something that will allow me to say, "I have done my best work. I have contributed to the world. I am leaving a legacy." I am nowhere near that and I am panicking as I realize that soon I would be old and useless.

Are you thinking the same thing or do you think I am crazy? Maybe this is midlife crisis. 

"Always find time to do what makes you feel alive."

Talking to people, finding out what they think and what moves them; travelling to new places, discovering beaches of the world; learning to make beautiful things with my hands. These make me feel alive. How can I do these and contribute to the world? 

I decided to dedicate some time making a travel/people/crafting/cooking YouTube show. Let's see where this goes. This might cure my midlife crisis or make it worse. This might make me feel truly alive or regret that I am alive. Some buy trucks, boats, RVs, ATVs, designer purses, truckloads of shoes, to cure their midlife crisis, why can't I just do the same? Oh, but some leave their spouses too, so never mind. I am not doing that.  

Where do you see yourself five years from now?