Enough with the new years posts already, right? So I’m calling this one an update on my 30th year. It’s about a third of the way through and I am digging it. Not to say that all other years can’t compare. But feeling like you’re standing on two feet in the middle of a tremor? It’s not a bad feeling at all.
I recently, or more like hours ago, finished the last global health contract I felt like I had to say an automatic YES to. This contract felt so different to the others in the past three years that I spent consulting, where I basically said YES to everything. It felt different because after this contract, I would start saying NO. NO because I didn’t want to work in a high stress, low appreciation, low inspiration, high drama environment. NO because it would take me away from developing the ideas that Cait and I have been brewing since the moment we became friends. And NO because I didn’t want to come home feeling like a total schmo whilst complaining to my partner and my friends about the trials and tribulations of working in a conflict-heavy environment that has a tendency to be antiquated, elderly and male. I am not leaving the world of global health consulting. I’m basically making a decision to recline.
So I recently got to say NO. And it felt fucking damn good. But it also felt a bit risky. I could have rung in 2015 with that freedom but I know I subconsciously kept delaying that inevitable. Inevitably it came. And I’m so happy it did.
For the longest time, I’ve been wanting to tell stories, both visually and literally. And to share all the weird stuff that I am currently digging. But everything I had been doing didn’t feel like it was enough. C+T has allowed both Cait and I to delve into these previously suppressed sides of ourselves in a way that feels fulfilling. So I’m really looking forward to developing my skills in photography and graphic design this year. And to tell more stories about people who are taking one foot out of the rat race and stepping into their own passions. If no one likes it, that’s cool too. What we are doing is not unique. The NYTimes recently dedicated an entire article to professionally hyphenated millennials. Cait wrote all about it last year too.
I know that I can say NO because I’m in a bit of a DINKy situation (that’s double income, no kids for all us yups). I also live in Phnom Penh where our costs of living are low; so while there’s a chain saw going at it in the neighbouring construction site while I write this, I know there’s a cheap massage around the corner to get rid of that. Phnom Penh is also full of creatives and entrepreneurs. The energy and momentum of being able to embark on a second career in an emerging economy is beyond amazing.
So how did I start the first day of a new deal? I got overwhelmed and wound up doing dishes and laundry and then threw out some words about this mess on le blog. Time to deeper in that mess! Thanks for hearing me out 🙂