Wise Counsel

One of the first things they tell you when you’re trying to achieve a goal is to tell people. Hold yourself accountable by telling people who will probably ask you how you’re doing. Even the Bible encourages you to consult others (Proverbs 15:22).

So far in my plan to move to San Diego, I have found this to be true. The closer the person is to me, the more they remind me of my goal. I told my roommate this weekend, and it has come up in every conversation we have had since. She is helping me plan and think about things I hadn’t put much thought into yet.

My roommate’s feedback to me was to be sure I’m not running away from difficulties here. I’ve had that same concern and I don’t think I am, but her caution made me stop and evaluate again. And I still don’t think I am. In fact, it will be even more difficult there. She reminded me of a friend who moved for their dream job and hated it for the first two years until they established a network of friends. I’m afraid that might happen to me, in spite of being closer to family.

Today, I’m sitting outside in the breeze and sun, enjoying the weather. It’s a bit warmer than it would be in SD and there are no palm trees, but hey, a girl can imagine! And it hit me that I can have exactly the same life I have now only in San Diego.

There’s only one catch to that: it has taken me five years to build this life. I don’t want to wait five years before I have friends, a church, and a job I love in the location I want to be in. So what steps can I take right away to get there? I wasted a lot of time in Chicago by not getting involved. So I’ve put together a list of things I can do right away to meet new people in a new city.

  • Find a church and get involved
  • Join a gym and attend regularly (yeah, Bar Method!)
  • Be social with coworkers
  • Find an alumni network
  • Join a professional group
  • Locate a running group
  • Go out and be friendly…no hiding behind my phone!
  • Learn a new hobby…like surfing?

Weight of Decision

It’s amazing what a simple decision can do to improve your outlook on everything. When you’re confused and doubting and all the reasons why or why not are buzzing around in your head, making a decision one way or another can provide amazing clarity and focus. And sometimes has the bonus effect of relieving pressure in other unrelated areas.

For a few years now, I have struggled to balance two conflicting desires: moving to San Diego and finding someone to share my life with. They regularly war with each other, because moving to San Diego essentially means that I can’t focus on meeting someone where I am, because I plan to move. And finding someone to share my life with here means I probably won’t be able to move to San Diego. Or I’ll have to delay it indefinitely. In the middle of both of them is my struggle with debt. I owe over $100,000 total, nearly all in student loans. That burden of debt makes moving tough.

Although I’m still over a year away, approaching 30 has focused my attention on my dissatisfaction with where I am in life. Watching my friends pair off happily, moving to California for their dreams, and working regularly with maternity leaves at work has not helped my attitude. And then I have the self-imposed guilt over my lack of enthusiasm for my friends. And I’m sick of it.

So I’ve made my decision. I am going to move to California. I am deliberately choosing not to pursue a relationship right now. I realize this probably means that I will over 30 before I get married. But I want to spend my life in a warmer climate and near my family and this choice and focus will lead to that.

Having made that decision, everything else makes more sense. It’s easier to focus on saving money to pay off debt and move. It’s much easier to interact with my friends and their significant others knowing that I have made the choice to focus on another dream. And it is amazingly encouraging to have a date. To be doing something about my dream. Everything I do somehow relates back to making this happen.

Has anyone else experienced this?