Monday, September 26, 2011

No Plan

It's time for the annual raincheck on my life. Not that I've been doing this annually, just that it sounds better than occasional raincheck on my life.

I'm 28 years old, and will be 29 years old in half a year, and then I will be 30 years old in another year, by which time I can no longer pass as a 'young adult' just starting out in the working world and trying to to figure out what to do with my life but I should already more or less have some sort of plan. Plans that any normal young adult usually has....stuff like aiming for a better work position and getting a higher salary, getting married and starting a family, saving up for my own home, starting a business, maybe even deciding to become a pastor.... stuff like that. At least that's the kind of plan I guess people pass their 30s should have. Although in reality, I'm sure there are many 30-somethings who still don't have a plan. And I've heard a quote by someone who said that at 40 years old he still hasn't figured what he wants to do when he grows up.

Well, right now, I don't really have a plan. And by not having a plan, I mean I don't have  have a clue what to do other than continue doing what I have been doing for my whole working life, which I guess so far has been work, go to the gym, go to church on Sunday, serve on Sundays, hang out with friends occasionally, waste time on Facebook, do some fun things every now and then, like travelling, paintballing, scuba diving, and that's pretty much it. It's been working out pretty well so far. But in terms of planning for my long-term future, I haven't been doing much in that respect. I have asked my this question recently... the famous question that potential employers use on employees... where do I see myself in 5 years? And my answer is... probably pretty much the same thing I'm doing right now.

I have been thinking of making a big change, which is moving overseas. My brother who's in the US is encouraging me to go there, or Canada, or Australia. And on surface, given all the complaints people have about this country that is Malaysia, it seems like great idea. The politics suck, the cost of living is skyrocketing, the education system is going to the shits, etc, etc. Why not just get out of here while I still can.

Well, unfortunately to say, I've realized that even though I do have some spark of adventure in me which is the reason why I can jump out of airplanes and go looking for sharks when diving/snorkelling, I still like my comfort zone here in Malaysia. Doing what I've been doing. Yeah, the politics suck, but as long as I can still live my life and the PM isn't trying to blow ME up with dynamite or accuse me of sodomy, I'm ok with the occasionaly drama in the news. Cost of living? Biggest costs are house and car and raising kids. I already have a fully paid, car and I stay with my parents in a cushy condo and not planning to move out unless I get married, and I'm not married which means I have no expensive kids to raise. Otherwise, cost of living is not that bad. Bad education system? Again, no kids, so well, doesn't really affect me.

Yes, I am still thinking that getting out of the country would be worth it. But only if I get married and plan to raise a family, which also means my future imaginery and elusive hubby would have to want to make the move too. As long as I'm single, Malaysia is a pretty cool place to stay in. I have friends and family here, I can watch my nieces grow up, we have great food, shops open way past 5pm, and also it would be a terrible waste to do my diving course this year and then move out of Malaysia (which is next to pretty much all the cool dive spots in the world).

So since I plan to be stuck here for a while, it still means I have no real concrete plan, whether it comes to work, finances, personal life or anything else. How many ways can I possibly have no plan?

Work-wise, I enjoy where I'm at but have been pretty happily plodding along doing my work and hoping for a raise every year. I'm far from the ambitious type where I tell myself I must become manager is x no. of years and at least double my salary or whatever... I just hope for the best and take whatever good I get, whether it be a raise or bonus or whatever. Only recently have I have been feeling stagnant in my area of work (as in I don't think it's getting me anywhere, position-wise) and itching for a change in the main work I do so I get different experience and better future prospects. This is only after almost 3 years in the same job. That change actually could have happened sooner in the almost 3 years since I've been with my current company, but a combination of being already busy with my now stagnating work and my own lack of drive to 'succeed', i.e. work myself up the corporate ladder, lead to the slow progress. But since I've been pretty happy at my job now, I see no reason to leave (part of the reason why I don't want to migrate yet... coz' I need more experience at my work!).

Financially, it's always at the back of my mind that I need to learn how to invest in something reliable. I am currently investing in something through the help of my dad who did all the research on the investment and I'm just along for the ride. But I know I can't rely on him forever and I need to learn how to do my own investments in the future. And since I hate anything to do with finance, except of course, the money itself, learning the tricks of investing in something is scary. Coz' investing is risky and putting my moolah in the wrong place might end up in me losing it. But it's still important, otherwise my moolah will just sit in the bank without growing and that might be difficult when I get to an age when I can't work anymore. Or I actually do start a family and have to raise those money sucking kids. :P My best plan in this area? Marry a guy who is good at financial planning and can help me with investments. Or even better. Marry a damn rich guy who doesn't squander his fortune away. Set for life, baby. >:)

Well, that leads to the next aspect where I have no plan... marriage and family. Kinda hard to plan for that I'm single. Though anything can happen of course, and in five years time I could very well and have met someone and start having little buns baking in the oven. Are there potential guys? Well, yes, there are always potential guys. Whether I will end up with any of them or not is another question. So right now, no plan whatsoever.

And then there's spiritual life. Well, I certainly have no plans to become a pastor, full-time church worker or anything of the sort. Once upon a time I wouldn't mind being married to a pastor if the opportunity came, but now I'm quite sure that will never happen coz' I'm pretty sure I'd make a terrible pastor's wife. On the other hand, I have been having... spiritual issues and was thinking that maybe it's time to go to another church and see what happens. And so was thinking of pulling out of ministries I'm serving in and leaving my current church. But still haven't done it. Mainly coz' I have no plan which church to go to AFTER that. Am kind of occasionally visiting other churchs when I can, to survey the field. It's funny coz' once in the church I went to in Australia, the pastor there, while praying for me, made a prediction that I would become some great woman for God. And everytime I think of that now, I'm just like...hmm... right....

So those are some of the ways where I have no plan in my life. But then I also asked myself... is it really so bad to not have a plan (other than financial planning, which I still consider important no matter what)? I mean, we can plan for stuff but it may not work out the way we want and turn out to be a waste of time (maybe money). Like I usually prefer not to plan for vacations too far ahead of the date, coz' there's another more important event that may come up later at the same time and screw up my plans (happened to me before and I wasted a flight ticket to Thailand!). On the other hand, if I'm content taking each day at a time and hoping for the best, whether it be in my work, personal life or spiritual life, then I may end with things better than I planned or hoped for. And actually I feel like this has what has been happening to me....for example, in my work I have been quite blessed with benefits and favour from my management with I'm not sure I deserve. And in my personal life, I have been blessed with some good friends, and.... I have met a guy whom I really like have great relationship with. But I'm still not sure what will happen between us in the long term, and until I figure it out, he's going to remain a secret. In the meantime, even with having no plan, I still greatly enjoy his company.

Perhaps it sounds bad, but I actually quite enjoy having no plan and enjoying the spontaneity of life. It's been working out for me so far and hopefully it'll continue doing so for a long time. :P