I should be happy, right? I’m employed. Lots of people aren’t. I make a decent living wage, and I have a pension. Lots of people don’t. I contribute to society. I promote access to justice for the disadvantaged. I assist people who have challenges to negotiate a confusing and frustrating system.

So, I should be happy, right?

Here’s the thing. I’ve been doing this for – wait for it – fifteen years. For last seven or eight of those years, I have been doing almost exactly the same thing, every single day. I interview people in crisis. No one comes to me because their life is Perfectly Happy and they Haven’t a Care in the World. People come to me when their life is going down the shitter, for any of a variety of reasons. Sad people; angry people; confused people. Some of them I can help, some of them I can’t. A few are grateful for my help. Most are indifferent. Some are frightening and intimidating. Whether I can help someone or not has nothing to do with whether they are pleasant and polite. It can be very, very frustrating.

So, I think sometimes, why don’t I do something else? This is not What I Wanted to Do When I Grow Up. I came to this field completely by accident in 1986, through the back door. I found it suited some deep-seated thirst for justice in me, and also paid the bills, so I have stayed.

But I may be getting just a little burned out…I’ve tried to pursue other opportunities within the organization, but for some reason, I think I’m pretty much where they want me. Don’t get me wrong, I feel valued but – getting a bit bored. Maybe a little jaded.

I never want to not-care. I never want to be another negative, bitter civil servant. I honestly believe in what I do, and I know it’s valuable. I’m not sure what the answer is here. It’s a good gig, and mostly, it’s been good to me, and I’ve been good to it.

Here’s a couple of rejected career change ideas:

1. Ballerina

Why not:

a) Kinda old.
b) Can’t dance.
c) Tutus (enough said about that).
d) Pretty sure shoes don’t come in my size.
e) Gotta find a ballet-dude who’s about seven foot six and can lift me over his head.

2. Medicine

a) Not good at science-y stuff.
b) Blood and stuff.
c) Poop and vomit.
d) Depressing being around sick people.

3. Gardener

a) Bad knees.
b) Bugs and stuff.
c) Dirty fingernails.
d) Sunstroke.

4. Teacher

a) Kids.

I’m stumped, friends. Really, what else am I qualified to do? As my Dear One says, my runway is getting shorter all the time. If I were to go back to school, it would have to be for a very short time.

I think the answer is to refresh my interest in what I do, or leave it strictly at the office door every night and enhance my life in other ways.

But I’m booooorrrrrrrrred.


One response »

  1. Hmm, sounds like a primary therapeutic approach would be a back rub from a Social Worker that loves you-I happen to know you have both:) Your runway isn’t getting shorter – unless you wish to study neurosurgery. I suspect that isn’t your career dimension anyways 🙂 The reality is that all of us working slobs have to make informed, strategic decisions when altering careers. But here’s an idea: You may not feel like returning to university for an unrelated field,. however, you have a solid degree now, and could pursue a Bsw or Msw in relatively short time. Lots of ways to combine mental health + legal knowledge; and that’s just one idea. With a bit of research, maybe there are places in your present organization that you could sell yourself if you enhanced your skills. Shmooze, and use your connections-they may CREATE a position for you, as I have seen with others. Hey, if you wanted to skip the university gig, what about a “career college?” CDI, etc..They’ve been very successful at fast, intense programs with impressive placement rates-maybe one exists to enhance your present awesome skill set. I know that you fundamentally care about people, and that’s the barrier you are presently facing-you’re not able to apply your empathy and social conscience to it’s capacity. Sadly, it sometimes seems that our society has few places for people that give a shit about others; as you do. But that’s not absolute. Don’t get down; you rock, there is are answers, and you are very loved . Den :o)

What? What?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s