I've tweeted about this a few times before, but it's such an important topic that it's worth writing a short article about.
You will face many crossroads in your life, and you will have to make many critical decisions. I don't want to spoil the surprise, but usually the right choice will be the difficult one. As Marcus Aurelius once said,
The obstacle is the way.
But among all these decisions and choices, none will play as big a role in your future and happiness as these three:
- Your job
Unfortunately, the choice about what you do to earn money is often not yours. If we are not in a financially comfortable situation, we are destined to take the first job we find related to our degree and grow old, somewhere between occasional gratitude and constant complain.
There are countless clichés on this subject, such as a person who does what he loves will never be working a day in his life. But there's no point in painting a pink picture: The truth is, making money by doing what you love is hard work – if it was easy, it wouldn't be on this list. To make it possible,
- You should find the passion for which you are ready to dedicate your life as early as possible and start 'working' on it as soon as possible.
- Another trick is to devote all your free time to improving yourself in your passion, while working in a traditional (and hopefuly one which you will not hate) job and earning enough income to keep you going.
- Whatever passion/hobby we're talking about, spend all your social energy trying to meet professionals who have a say in that subject and getting into groups and environments with other people who share the same interests. Eventually, a door will open.
- Your spouse
Of the three, this is the decision you have the least control over, especially if you're an antisocial/introverted person.
We are all surrounded by people who step from stone to stone, those who make peace with their ex because they can't find a better one, those who spend a lifetime in toxic relationships accompanied by endless arguments, those who got married at an early age without even knowing themselves, and those who complain about it for years and wait for an opportunity to cheat.
Aside from the emotional damage this mess will cause you, we're talking about a tremendous waste of time. Just like your job, the difference between wrong and right here will make you either invincible or miserable. If you're lucky and find the right person before it's too late, you can now devote all your energy to the other two issues, and you're no longer alone in this battle.
How will you know you have found the right person? It's hard, before you've been hurt by the wrong ones. Unfortunately, human beings understand the value of what they have either if they came from nothing or if they lost what they had. Roughly, you will see by trial: One day all the stones will fall into place and time will begin to flow together like water.
The wrong couple mutually interrupts the flow of life, while the right couple removes obstacles from each other's way.
- Your country
It is worth repeating:
Geography is not destiny.
If it were, there would not be thousands of immigrants who left the country of their birth and lived happily ever after. True; as many people who try this either can't hold on, or they succumb to their longing and return. You have to look at these two groups from the outside and decide which one you want to join.
If you are not satisfied with the conditions of your home country and you think that another one will be more advantageous in achieving your dreams and the living standards that you think you deserve, the question in front of you is:
Do I want all this enough to leave my comfort zone, leave my family and friends behind and spend the time and effort required to adapt to a completely different culture? Will I be able to dedicate myself to start life practically from scratch?
Of course, it is a very difficult decision, but the sooner you make this decision, the easier it is. Not after you turn 30 and have children, but still in high school or university, you should realize this reality and make this step an obsession. Because if we were to list these three decisions chronologically, your country should come first; ultimately it is your environment that will inevitably shape your other decisions.