October has been an incredibly tumultuous month. It started by my taking two trips to visit family, separated by only a week. While I did enjoy the travel and the chance to spend time with people I love and care about, the trips were inopportunely timed with a big transition in my business. Suffice it to say, there were many bumps along the road, and it would have been much easier to handle them if I had stayed at home. The traveling, in addition to other festivities (Homecoming, Halloween, etc), have combined to send me into a real spiral of disarray.
This period of chaos has brought a few key issues to light. First, I thrive in a routine. Second, I worry about things, and when I worry, I don’t communicate well. Third, I have an abysmally low level of experience in the professional world. This third point has brought about a particularly large sting, because that lack of experience caused me to simply TRUST where I should have had legal contracts. But, despite my losses, this does not mean the end of the world. All it means is that I am at a crossroads; either I need to quickly dive into business strategy, or I need to reevaluate my life plan.
In truth, most of the current downfalls that I have been experiencing can be blamed on no one other than myself. I have been at a professional standstill for months, mostly due to my inexperience and lack of desire to further my understanding of the business. But at the heart of the problem is the fact that I inherited this from my late mother, and I don’t think it can ever feel truly my own. I didn’t build it, I don’t enjoy it, and I don’t seem capable of making it work in the long term. Additionally, by running my own business, even for this short time, has taught me that everyone in business is out for their own profit at the expense of others. I just don’t think I’m cut out for being constantly challenged, attacked, and bombarded for money. I would rather be in the middle of the chain of command, rather than at the top, at least for now.
So, while I’ve been struggling with that reality, the rest of the world keeps progressing, and the business keeps going downhill. However, it recently occurred to me that sticking with this is not my only option. That may seem like a painfully obvious fact, but the real problem is that I didn’t know what else to do instead. My undergraduate degree is in geology, and I always thought I wanted to do something in that field. And it’s not as though I’ve ruled that out, but the truth of the matter is that jobs in geology are difficult to find, and I would definitely need a higher degree.
What occurs to me about geology is that I love it like a hobby, not like a career. I loved going on field trips and learning about it, but I disliked doing my own research. So, what remained to be found is some other career path where I could feel secure in my ability to find a job that I would enjoy. I have always ruled out “behind a desk” work, and until recently, I ruled out anything that involved my going back to school. But now that I’ve found something I’m excited to do, going back to school for two years doesn’t seem so bad.
At the beginning of this year, I came very close to registering for some biology courses at my local community college, just to further my education. Now, I am looking into taking those same course as pre-requisites for a degree in nursing. Right now, my plan is to take the courses necessary to quality for the RN test, and then start working at an entry-level position. I can always decide later to get a second Bacelor’s in Nursing (or beyond), but I’d like to work in the field before I do.
I’m completely shocked by all of these realizations, but the more I think about this new path, the more it feels like a great fit. I will still be working within the scientific community, I will get to work with people (which is what I wanted to do as a National Park Ranger), and I will enter a field with ample employment opportunities. More than anything, it gives me a purpose and an action plan that I can enact immediately. And I can start along this path without moving. Right now I have the energy and flexibility to pursue this change in career.
This feels right. Now I just need to take the steps to enroll in the spring. I’ll update when I know more!