Welcome to 2013. See ya later 2012! It was a damn good year...
Next week I gotta go back to work, something I am honestly not looking forward to. My heart just isn't in it anymore, which is a pity, but my six months off has at least shown me where I stand financially, made me think about what does interest me, allowed me to indulge in some creative pursuits and given me some serious quality time with my favourite smelly old pooch. Yeah that's you Hazel, I know you read my blog, you don't wipe your dirty paws!!!
Despite my wish to travel the world for extended periods, I've come to realise that I also cherish where I live, in particular my tiny piece of real estate here in Drummond Cove. With a great climate, awesome ocean views from a wraparound verandah, a garden I love to nurture, and a stone's throw from the beach, my life here is something most people could only dream about. And I'm not talking it up, where I live truly is pretty close to paradise.
Except for the yearly mouse plague that is!
My initial plan was to retire in 2014, but I don't believe I can financially set myself up for that by then. I don't want to bust my gut writing a travel blog like some people do to finance their travels (as if I'd ever make money out of it anyway!) because it just doesn't look like fun, it looks like work!! Alot of work. I love writing about my trips, posting pictures, talking about the people I meet, the places I see, but I don't want to HAVE TO do it. Or play the affiliate marketing game. It just looks like work that I don't want to do. I love being an amateur blogger, I hate ads on sites I visit, so if I can finance my travels some other way, I'd rather.
Instead I'll work a little longer in my current job, but take at least 3 months off every year to travel or just chill from the stress of my work. I've also been well and truly told by one of my friends that I'm a total shit when I work full-time, so not to even think about working full-time as a strategy to fill the coffers sooner. She's got a point, why kill oneself (and others!!) in the process?
Those of you who don't know, I'm a doctor working with the Aboriginal people of Australia. They have some pretty appalling health statistics, coupled with social and economic problems that are not an easy fix. It's tough work, but I love it because the people are wonderful and the work is challenging. If I had to swap it for a job looking after the worried well and pap smears I'd go crazy. Better the devil you know...
Earlier I said my heart's not in it. Going into work each day and performing the drudgery of a job is what my heart isn't into any more. I'm still as passionate about issues relating to Aboriginal Health as I've always been, it's just the day to day drudgery that I'm not looking forward to. Oh I'm so bloody precious aren't I??
I've really enjoyed the lack of routine of the last six months, of pursuing different goals, going off on tangents, and living a fairly basic day to day existence. I've been able to achieve a lot, even if not as much as I'd planned, but I've also found room for creativity, which I've cherished. And I hope I can take this space I'm in right now into the future.
So because it's a new year, I'm going to put down a few goals for my next 12 months. I've always written to-do lists, but this is more big picture.
1. Look after my physical health. Goes without saying really, that if I'm not eating well and exercising regularly then anything else is a waste of time. And there's a ski trip to NZ planned so I gotta be fit and strong!
2. Make time for creativity. This means not cluttering my life with the mundane and petty, it may mean taking time to meditate, or actively pursuing a creative activity, like taking more photographs or editing my videos, or continuing the great tyre wall of Drummonds!! Of course it also includes pottering around in the garden.
3. Plan for redundancy. This is perhaps more work related, and is about succession planning, not taking on extra responsibilities and delegating when possible. It's also about making my house fit for renting out when I get around to throwing in the towel completely. And about building a secure digital asset management system - but that's a separate blog topic altogether!!
And that's it! Do you think I should add "try and enjoy work"???