I've been thinking about this since I initially became unemployed in February of 2009:
Am I really doing what I want to be doing with my life?
Figuring out the answer to that question certainly isn't easy when you're going through an emotionally fraught period of adjustment, to a new city, a new partner, and the incredibly difficult job market. I know what I went to school to study. I know the typical career path that many of the peers that sat next to me in financial accounting classes took. A lot of them did what was drilled into us from the time we started the program. You study hard, you meet the hours requirements, you take a prep class, you sit for the CPA exam, and you go work for one of the big 4. It was the path that I knew I didn't want to take. When I was in the midst of my job search, I worked as a temp for a low income public housing organization. It was challenging, but the people I worked with all had such a strong sense of passion for what they were doing. It rubbed off on me.
I've been working as a staff accountant for a little over 2 years now, since I finished my graduate program. I've managed spreadsheets, compiled financials, analyzed income statements and balance sheets, and even pulled three year old shipping documents for our auditors to test. Before that, I was keying invoices, matching PO's, and receiving lists in accounts payable. And before that, I interned at a grant-making organization, with the sole purpose of developing a leadership group for young women. And way, way back when, I was stacking books at the university library and slinging ice cream in the Los Angeles suburbs. I have by no means done it all. I have, however, started to come to the strong conclusion that I don't want to only do this sort of work for the rest of my life.
Maybe it's that you reach some sort of critical point when you hit 25 that you start to reflect on where you are professionally speaking. Maybe it's just me. Whatever it is, I've started to let things formulate. I've got ideas. I've got plans.
I want to start something that's mine. A business of my own. I'd like to, ideally, start said business by the time I reach 30. That gives me five years to figure out how to make my vision a reality. I know the whole five year plan thing can sound a little cliché, but I look at it this way. If it fails, I'll be young enough to get back out into the market and can still manage to have some sort of savings or retirement funds. (I'm a planner, what can I say?) And if it ends up working out, I'll be young enough to manage it, improve it, and invest in it.
And this? This blog is to help keep me accountable. To give me a place to work out my thoughts. To give me a place to plan and execute. And that's also where you come in. Help keep me accountable. Give me your feedback. Tell me I'm crazy. Whatever. Just do it.
I'll end this introduction with the words I once said to my soon-to-be husband: "I moved here so we could be together as you pursued your dreams and career goals. I need you to stand by me as I pursue mine."