Narrowing down is the hardest thing

two yellow lines on asphalt
Photo: Andrew Martin Pixabay

When you’re a person who likes to do more than one thing in their life, narrowing them down is the hardest thing. Sometimes I wish I could narrow my interests, but I’m not that kind of person. I could have achieved so much more if I had only concentrated on a few things. It feels like time is running out, and I don’t have time to do anything. I need to have time to be lazy too. I thought I wanted to be one thing, but my interests got somewhere else. That’s how my life has been. So many choices but so little time. Maybe one of the reasons why I have had so many problems with decisions is that I think the grass is greener on the other side. Perhaps I’ve been too unrealistic with what I’ve wanted to do in my life. It isn’t a lack of support from other people. I subconsciously don’t dare to do things because I’m too scared of failing. Or maybe I’m just too lazy. It can also be like that because I failed many times, so I don’t want to go through it again. I know when you fall, you get up again, but still, I don’t get anything done.

I could have narrowed things down, but I like to be versatile. I never wanted to have an ordinary job, so it was difficult to know what to study. When I finally do, that’s not enough either. The reality is that some people are narrow-minded, even if they might think that they aren’t. Their opinion is that you need to have specific education and a certain amount of job experience to be good enough to be in their little group known as ‘their business’. You need to be a student or have an amount of experience to even get an internship. Neither way, you can’t gain experience if you’re not allowed to practice your skills in a job. I’ve started to believe I’m not meant to be a graphic designer. At Helsinki Design School, where I studied some years ago, I didn’t get the encouragement I expected. I got the assumption that I’m only average compared to the others. One time I got feedback on a poster I made about my city from one of the teachers. I should have done some research, and she wouldn’t have put it on her wall. I know my town, so there is no need for it. I just think she didn’t understand my style. One opinion doesn’t make me believe I’m bad at graphic design. Drawing isn’t my strong point anyway. It makes you think twice, though. It’s the same with photography. I doubt my skills in that too. Seeing other people’s work doesn’t help me either. It’s a little depressing. It makes me think I’m not good enough at anything. It feels like I’m an outcast and don’t belong to this creative business club. Maybe I have wasted my time and life thinking I have what it takes to be a graphic designer. Or any other job where design is concerned.

It’s a positive thing to have knowledge of many things instead of only having one narrow one. Both have a good and a bad side. If you know about many things, it’s also more challenging to choose between them. If you have a narrowed skill, it’s easier to improve that. Either way, both are needed. If there is something you can’t do, there is always someone who can. I only wish someone could have some use for my skills in the workplace, but I guess there isn’t. Too bad for them.

Stubborn as a mule

mule figure in stone

Zoomorphic sounds like a zoo with terrifying animals. But when I looked it up, it’s not. I like metaphors, so I chose to see myself as stubborn as a mule. But I could also be a scaredy-cat because I’m scared of doing anything brave. Cats can also be stubborn. In some things, no one wouldn’t know I’m stubborn because I give up easily. If I had been bolder, things would be different. I’ve strong-willed when it comes to choices. You can’t make me do things by force. I do them when I feel like it. For example, if you say to me to clean the flat, I won’t do it because someone says I should. I do it when I want. I need to have the motivation to do it. I haven’t studied for occupation because there are jobs in them. I’ve studied things I wanted to. My parents never told me what to study. They have suggested things, but I’ve always followed my guts. I wouldn’t be happy if I had to do something I didn’t like. It hasn’t paid off, though. I instead am without a job than be in a position I don’t like. No matter how big the salary is.

You need to be stubborn to find a job. If you get rejected, you don’t stop searching. But I don’t have that in me. I’m both a stubborn mule and a scaredy-cat. I wish I was brave as a lion. I won’t hold my breath to get any contact from the companies I’ve sent the open applications to. I’m gonna move on. I’m not sure what to do, but I’ll let it be for later. I’m stubborn, so setbacks won’t make me give up. It’s the world that is in a hurry, not me.

Futile things 

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Made in Canva

I dislike it when I do a lot of hard work, but in the end, they are futile anyway. It’s a waste of energy, so I prefer doing things with a meaning. Sometimes, when I write a blog post that doesn’t get much attention, I feel I should have done something else instead of writing. I had this feeling when I started to blog quite a lot. Today I still feel like that, but I accept all posts won’t interest people. I write to myself anyway. I would write even if I felt it was futile. If you don’t write, you won’t get better at it. My job is done if I can get at least one person to like what I write. It’s not a competition about how many likes a post receives. This is my 9th year of having this blog which is an excellent achievement for a person who gives up too quickly. I’ve learned to be more persistent. If I only would be one when it comes to other things in life.

I could have done so much more if I hadn’t given up, but you can’t turn back. You just need to look forward and learn from the past. It’s never too late to become better as a person or in whatever you do professionally. Things can feel futile but finding at least one positive thing makes you feel it wasn’t all that bad. I’ve studied photography because I thought I wanted to become a photographer. But that’s wasn’t meant to be. I’ve studied web design because I wanted to become a web designer, but that wasn’t meant to be either. Then came graphic design. All that studying haven’t got me very far. I still feel like I’m a rookie, but it doesn’t feel they’ve been futile. I can do all of those things and more. If I get bored with one thing, I can do something else. I always wanted to do different things. I can combine the things I’ve studied with each other. E.g. photography and graphic design. If I had learned about subjects I wasn’t interested in, things would have felt even more futile. My first education after compulsory school was health care, but I’ve learned how to make a bed, so the bed cheat stays in place. I also learned about psychology at the school, so it’s wasn’t entirely wasted. Maybe I have been persistent in other things in life too. It takes a lot to find what you want to do with your life. It takes longer for some, but it’s not about getting there before anyone else. It’s about the journey. Life is not a sprint. It’s a marathon. I’m only half of the way.