Thursday, April 12, 2007

Quarter Career Crisis

It has been bothering me for months now. And I have no idea what to do about it. I think while most people face a mid-life crisis, I must be facing a quarter career crisis. An average career lasts about 33-35 years and I have been working for 8 now. I learn new things everyday, meet different people everyday, but it is the same routine. The excitement that I earlier felt in my career seems to have gone on a long vacation.

Suddenly, the creative person within me seems to be in a tearing hurry to come out. I want to do different things. I want to start a home furnishing store since I am doing so much needlework in any case. Could that not be a lucrative career?

A couple of weeks ago, I baked a batch of chocolate chip cookies. They turned out delicious. Sometime before that, I baked a batch of absolutely chewy brownies. Why don't I start a home bakery? Why don't I start classes? I have been baking since I was 10. Why did I ignore it in between?

Under the pretext of "preparing for my career", I quit learning music. I sang last night at a restaurant. The Abba song that truly has all it takes to be "my song": Thank you for the music. The high that I got when I got off the stage was like nothing I'd felt in ages. Why did I give it up?

I've been writing for as long as I can remember. It fascinates me. From writing short stories to national level award winning essays, I've enjoyed the journey. Where did I lose touch? Why is it I don't write anymore?

These are the supposed "sacrifices" that I've made to be what I am professionally. I've had this single minded focus to make it big in my chosen profession. I started this journey wanting to be an immunologist. I landed up in management. No, not even in a biotech/pharma company. Ever so often I catch myself thinking of the "what if". My closest friends had chosen to remain in science. I envied them for being able to stick to their chosen lines. Things, today, are no different for them. I, along with my closest friends, am at the crossroads of life yet again.

What choices will we make? What will we be remembered for? What lies in store for us? We have enough to show for the 3 decades of existence on this planet. What about the remaining time? Will we have enough to show? Not to the world, but to ourselves. All I can wish for is that all of us lead fulfilling lives so that when it is time for us to go, we have no regrets.


Biby Cletus said...

Nice post, its a really cool blog that you have here, keep up the good work, will be back.

Warm Regards

Biby Cletus - Blog

Pritika said...

Raaga, i can totally relate to what you're saying, except in my case careerwise, things are slightly different.

I too have the urge to start a business, baking was foremost on my mind :) i have many ideas sometimes i wish i could be a business consultant, bah! I think what you're going through is a period of reflection and questioning, the time to make a move is now, before you decide to have a family, you mustn't scarifice your longings for a satisfying but sedenetary lifestyle.

Pretty Woman said...

we all have our dreams dont'we? but how many of us actually push ourselves to acheive it, is THE talking about myself as well....there is so much potential in all of us....but what efforts or drives us to achieve them??? I wonder...

Raaga said...

@ Biby: Thanks.

@ Pritika: Life takes its own path. Sometimes all the planning that we do goes waste when there is one life-changing moment. I moved out of Science and into Management without as much as batting an eyelid. The time is now... family will change everything. I agree. But if the urge is strong enough, I will do it... despite and because of everything.

@ Janani: To a great extent, I am living a dream. In fact, in this one life, I have lived several of my dreams. The thing is... each day brings a new dream, a new twist, a new path leading to the unknown.

G'man said...

Very interesting..
Let me give you a slightly different perspective. If there is something that you really like to do, then do not make a career out of it. Another five or six years down the line, that new love could become boring once again.. Moreover, singing, baking and writing is good fun when you really want to do it leisurely. Imagine having to write an article on some obscure topic with a 24 hour deadline on your back..

Even I thought about all these things that you have said.. Sort of a preemptive move to a career crisis. If I want to write, I will write over a period of tens of years, and think about publishing if it is worthwhile. Even otherwise, if I spent 10 years writing it, it must have been good fun. A reason good enough to pursue.

Instead of a career change, you could try and take a less load at work so that you have more time to enjoy these other things that you like to do.

Of course, I know that you are talented enough to make a career out all the above said things.. :-)

Raaga said...

@G'man: Probably... maybe it is my love for these things that stopped me from turning them into full fledged careers. :)

Nandita said...

Can identify with almost everything you've written...I used to be very into needlework too, music, drama, the same road and now not pursuing anything...I want to change that very soon!

Raaga said...

@ Nandita: Have fallen in love with your blog... totally.

My best friends and I have been exchanging tons of mails on this issue... all of us, seem to want to break free... how is the big Q.

junoesque said...

hi raaga

yes this is juno@ryze

i am so sorry i can't place you ?

please do drop me a line at


Raaga said...

Hi Juno... am a new entrant to the Delhi Ryze scene... moved after marrying a Delhi Ryzer :)