It all started when I lost my casual job as an electrician that I had kinda fell into after coming out of my apprenticeship. I wasn’t bad at my job, I did what was required, and thought outside the box to get things done, but I excel more in the theory and in the books rather than in practice. The company had no more work and didn't need me anymore, that's fair enough, but it really made me think about everything I'd done coming out of school.
I'd come out, put 4 years of hard work, sweat and tears into this, for what? Yeah I was on good money but I hated going to work, I hated being at work, and the end of the day couldn’t come fast enough. I just wanted to do all the things I actually cared about, that felt valuable, things that mattered to me. Not be doing what felt like wasting my life away doing stuff that never felt like it really mattered because it never had the personal touch of me on it. Because without that personal touch it doesn’t feel like you’ve contributed anything at all.
I knew as I soon as I was qualified I didn’t want to be working for the rest of my life, I couldn’t be, I could tell that others got some form of enjoyment that I never could. I could never relate to a lot of the loudmouth, sexist, racist 4WD loving tradesmen and apprentices that lived to finish work and go to the pub to get drunk beyond belief. I was always quite the opposite. I’d be by myself using the time away from work to unwind at home, maybe text some friends, play some video games, but that’s about as crazy as it got.
Even after I turned 18 (which is the legal drinking age here in Australia) I was never a really big drinker since I’d been doing it with friends since I was about 14-15. My drinking did spike mid way through 19 until late 20, but after that it went back down to a minimal level, and has remained that way since. It’s been a few years and nothing has changed, I really don’t drink that much but it has never bothered me.
In relation to how I was outside of work and in my free time I knew that I didn't want to be on construction sites, or servicing equipment for the rest of my life. I just didn’t have the knack for it like other guys did. I just couldn’t keep up because I was never fully engaged, never really interested, because deep down I knew that doing this forever would drive me insane.
Losing that job pushed me to do other things I'd never even considered trying, all in just a desperate attempt to try not to have to go back to that boring, monotonous grind of working, day in day out.
I not only wanted, but needed, to find something I really enjoyed that could somehow make ends meet.
The thing I have loved much more than anything else is not having virtually every hour of the day dictated to by someone else, is getting up and thinking, “What can I do today that will better some part of me? Or something that is uniquely my own? What is something I would enjoy to be doing?” Some people live for traditional work, I completely get that, it’s just not for me.
Everyone always tells you, “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” What if there's no traditional 9-5 job you love? What if a traditional path isn’t for you? Where does the joy begin when there’s bills to pay and you have to feed yourself and your loved ones.