Sure I promised I’d post more often (that was close to a year ago) but things have happened in my personal life that needed my attention. However, I am here now. Another year older and wiser, with lots of learning to document. So buckle up!
The only time you ever make a change, is when there is enough of pain. Unfortunately, that is what is transpiring for my family. And being the logical rock that I always am, I tried to burrow it down and bury myself in my usual coping ways – the main one being work. As a planner, I’ve charted out most of my life: goals, milestones, it’s all one big checklist. I had to ask – “where is this all going?”
So, if I played the various routes out, and the outcomes were the worst possible, what would I like the end to mean? How do I give my life meaning if all the things I ever wanted to achieve were taken away from me? Heady questions to ask yourself at the best of times.
I’ve lived by a motto, a personal mission if you will – something I took away from 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
“To leave the world a better place, for having been in it”Me, circa 2012
I then broke that down into different quadrants – Family, Work, Service and Hobbies. And family is something I often put on the back burner, working towards becoming a financially secure man. I still believe in those traditional values of protector, provider and procreator. I used to believe that I was wrong to put pursuing family last, but as another quote states – “Things happened just as they were meant to happen and there was no other way that it could have happened”. I think I am finally ready. So what did this mean?
I had to make a tough decision. I had to give up my dream job working for a good manager in a good company. Never in my wildest dreams would I have considered making the jump from corporate to non-profit. Not only that but taking a massive pay cut along the way. With everything that happened, I knew I could not continue on my path. It just did not make sense.
The new role, in my new setting – I cannot even begin to state what a night and day difference it is. The sense of purpose I now achieve, is immeasurable. The work is intellectually the hardest yet the most rewarding aspect of the role. I’ve committed to not working 70-80 hour weeks, not because I can’t, but because I choose to. Going harder than I ever had in a short period of time has been phenomenal. It also does mean, that I have space to hold for my family and be there for them in the way they need me. I am blessed: the new job is understanding of my situation and have been more than comforting when I have required it. I haven’t yet hit my stride here, but the wave is building up – I hope the team is ready for the avalanche that is about to befall them! All in a good way of course.
I still volunteer.
People have asked me how I still do it? Easy. I had to move to another area where they were able to accommodate my needs during the challenging times I’m facing with the family. And I have never been happier. It’s amazing to me, to see how much more I am willing to give when you get the freedom to try new concepts. And to be honest, the social dinners with the SES Lilydale unit has been amazing. I’ve had more opportunities to get on the chainsaws and help out with training than I have ever had. It has been nothing short of remarkable. How long will I keep doing it? This one seems like a lifetime effort for me.
Interestingly, I have also re-discovered my religion. I’m not here to be preachy and if we do meet in real life, feel free to hit me up about this topic. I can expand for hours if need be!
Look, regardless of whatever people say, growing old is mandatory, growing up is optional. As long as you look after yourself, you can keep having the fun you want. I have decided to take up another martial art – and whilst the injuries come quick and fast (a good reminder I’m not 19 anymore), I’ve impressed myself by my own patience. I don’t have that foolishness to push myself headfirst like I used to. There’s a lot to be said for maturity coming with experience. (But that experience comes from stepping outside of your comfort zone)
You know what, I don’t know where I would be without my friends. There are so many that I have discovered that have kept me buoyant when I have needed it most. The other impressive thing is that I have reached out to people too. Not all can cope, but if I spread the load and ask people to meet where they are comfortable with, it all works out. I know you guys read this blog and I apologise that I haven’t posted in a while. You know how much I care and that’s what’s important. I don’t even need to name names. You know who you are. And as always, welcome to the new people I have met. And hello to all my international friends I have made! My offer still stands!
What’s In It For Me, The Casual Reader?
First up, welcome. Stay a while and peruse – you never know what you might discover. For you, I’m looking to provide insight about great local restaurants and amazing events that I have been to! Did you know Zomato closed down in Australia and I didn’t even hear a thing about it. I was definitely sad to see them go.
This site will be for movie reviews, events and food. My personal blog will be about career advice and non-fiction book reviews. I’d be grateful if you visited: http://www.nigeldsouza.com. To be fair, I definitely need to up my content game. And with the onset of all these AI tools, it can make people nervous about where the future is going to take us. But I stay optimistic. One of the things I have been mulling over, is how would I start over again if I was just about to leave high school. I was going to say University (or college for my American readers), but I query whether a degree is worth it anymore. I’ll be starting a series on how best to start again, now or into the future. Definitely be worth your time looking into it. It’s funny how true the Matrix movies series is becoming. I sense another post in there too. I’ll leave that for a personal blog post.
I also have my 30 day experiment series back on for 2023. What gets tracked, gets measured. And Atomic Habits summed it well, all you need to do is be 1% better than you were yesterday.
Plus, I’ll help you dive into the privacy side of the world. Most likely, I’ll link to people that I have found super useful in both information and practicality. Ever since I took up the mantle for a job, privacy is now at the forefront of my mind. It’s easy to be overwhelmed, so let me help you cut through the noise. Be warned, it will require your focus for periods longer than you are used to.
I’m back – expect more posts as I get back into the swing of things and move things around. I have so much to share with you.
If you do the social things, please follow my blog, Facebook and/or Instagram account. You will get to consume the information in the way that suits you best. And who knows, maybe we can be optimistic about the future together through these words.