Birthday Reflections

I just turned 36 years old.

Every year around this time I do some deep inward reflecting. Am I happy? What would I change? Is my career where I want it to be? 

Lately I’ve been returning to two thoughts:

I’m bored with the status quo. Give me a problem to solve, an uphill battle to climb, a difficult personality to work with. Give me a challenge to bite into, but leave the status quo for the robots to manage. In every place I’ve worked, I have seen people shrink—just for the sake of maintaining the status quo. Some find this necessary when navigating office politics, but this is not the legacy I want to leave. I want to continue to be known as the one who implemented change, added value, and moved on.

Careers evolve, and that’s okay. Clearly the days of sticking to one profession until you retire (or die) are long gone. I’ve been inspired by the retired firefighter who is now a successful electrician, as well as a dear friend who retired as VP of a large chemical company and is now a thriving clinical psychologist. I’m currently a human resources practitioner who also teaches non-profit leaders how to raise money, but my dream is to become an industrial and organizational psychologist. Seeing people completely switch lanes is inspiring.

This is what I’m chewing on as I start my 36th year. Happy birthday to me.