Lately I’ve been doing a lot of searching within myself. It felt so great to let go and forgive as I had posted about before, but then I started to obsess over my current career situation. I’ve been a server for about eight years now and it just hit me that I should be doing something else. Not so much as a “should be” but more of a “could be” which is how I ended up where I did yesterday.
Yesterday I did a google search for career options. You see, I can never really pick one specific thing that I would be happy with forever. I know all different careers come with challenges, struggles and pure moments of joy over accomplishments. I have the brain to do it. I have the heart and the work ethic but what really scares me is the idea that I may not really don’t enjoy it in the end. What if I finally decided on something and then changed my mind about it?
Well, in this google search a link to a personality test popped up. I figured why not. At this point I was so beyond frustrated with myself that I just took the ten minutes to see what it said.
I’m glad I did.
What it ended up telling me was that I’m an INFP (Introversion, Intuition, Feeling, Perception).
Well, at first I was a bit confused so as usual I did a bit of research and what I found made all the sense in the world to me.
I want to do something meaningful. I want to do things that will help or make other people happy. I can completely obsess over one thing on day one, then switch over and obsess over another on day two. I have a hard time finishing things and large gatherings exhaust me. I do things based on feelings and am always running whatever situation/decision/option up against my strong list of values.
I write a lot. Every day, in fact. I keep a journal just to record my thoughts, feelings and to help me work out a problem.
The other thing about this personality type was how rare it is. Apparently 4% of the population has this type of personality and a lot of the people who commented on those random sites that I researched it on had felt alone, weird and out of place.
That’s the exact same way I have felt. Like I was strange for not being able to come up with one single thing in my mind that I would like to do for a meaningful career.
Do I want to write?
Do I want to be an artist and sell my work?
How about a pattern writer?
A business owner?
I can’t pin point it exactly. It changes on a day to day basis and it drives me nuts. I wish I could just have a plan and go to town on it but I can’t. I can’t bring myself to choose because what if I do and I find something better? What if I fail miserably at what I attempt?
I know failing isn’t the worst thing and that it’s completely necessary for success. I know that without failure you can’t learn from the experience and grow. But I also know that if I fail in one thing, or seemingly fail, or I criticize myself to pieces over it, my heart breaks a little.
Then I don’t even know where to begin with it all. I know that if I take the teaching route I’ll need to go back to school which isn’t horrible either. I love school. I just hate the burden of debt afterward. Then what if I go back to school for the teaching degree, change my mind again and then end up with all that debt and no degree to go along with it?
These are the things I think about. I look at every situation from every single angle and overanalyze it to pieces until I just can’t think about it anymore.
I thought I was alone in this and thankfully I’m not. That test did a lot to help in the process of figuring out why I do the things I do. Why I can be SO excited about a project, my book for instance, work on it for hours at a time, but once I get up I can’t bring myself to go back to it. My studio is packed full of projects that I’ve started, gotten half way thru and put away.
Maybe out of fear that I’ll mess it up after working so hard on it for so long.
Maybe it’s because I simply lost interest.
Maybe it’s even because I had a lot of different ideas going on in my mind that day and another one got the better of me while I was in the middle of another.
Can you see why I become so frustrated with myself? I can’t even type this blog post without going back and changing words to make them fit better, or because I’m doubting the word that I had used won’t get my point across the right way.
I’ve always described myself as a “procrastinating perfectionist”…it’s scary how true that really is. At least there’s a more professional term for it, a personality type for it and that 4% of people I have it in common with.
I’m glad that I’m not alone in this. That it’s just my personality type. In the meantime I’ve decided I’m going to stop obsessing over the career thing. I have a solid job for now and worrying about being 28 and not having a direct path for a career isn’t the worst thing in the world.
I have my amazing family. I have some wonderful friends. I have a good home. I have a silly dog. I have a job that’s fun to work at and it keeps me social and a little less awkward.
(Well…that whole socially awkward thing, thankfully, is also part of being an INFP, so I’ll just let it go.)
So today…now that I’ve addressed the reasons behind why I am the way I am, I’m going to enjoy my blessings around me. We’re all happy, healthy and taking care of each other in an old school, family style way.
That’s what really counts.
Maybe I’ll figure out the career thing.
Maybe it’ll just come to me.
Maybe I’ll find one where I could have the time, money and energy to be able to work on all the other paths I’ve started wandering down.
Maybe I will go back to school to become an art teacher and maybe it’ll work out fantastically because I’ll have the same schedule as the kids, I’ll have nights and weekends off, school vacations, a steady income and time to do all sorts of other things like write and such.
Maybe that’s my avenue.
Maybe that’s been my avenue all along and I just didn’t realize it, notice, was too scared to fail or change my mind or didn’t know where to even begin with it.
In either case, I cannot change these things today, not right at this second, so I’m going to put them on paper, type them out into the world and see what comes of it. For now, I’m happy with where I am (even if I am still serving after eight years, but hey, at least I’m working and making a better life for us…) with the people I have around me and even with all the unfinished projects downstairs.
Peace, love and INFP,