MANY PATHWAYS LEAD TO THE GOAL
My life has been, as it were, anything but straightforward. School and academics and such pursuits were never really my strength, and I stopped just short of finishing the German equivalent of high school as university wasn’t really in the cards for me. As the educational system here is different than in the United States and other places, there were other ways for me to continue my life. My dream job was to become a member of the police force but thanks to poor vision, I had to let this dream go. I landed a 630 DM/month job (roughly 325€) and various weekend projects in 2002 with a television company. It was enjoyable work. Eventually I completed an internship and education course as a media designer and enjoyed traveling the world and participating in major sports and music events.
Contrary to even my own expectations, two years after the completion of my education I felt the urge to somehow develop myself further, so I supplemented my training as a media designer with a business management / sports management education. (I wasn’t getting any younger and wanted to see where my life might take me). I was already quite familiar with my learning habits after many years of primary and secondary school, plus several apprenticeships and internships, so I knew that I would only be able to pursue a full-time study course under certain conditions. I quit my job as a wireless technician and took a position in a golf club, in the naive assumption that this would bring some more peace to my life, as since golf is a seemingly relaxed sport and the people at a club are there for their own leisure. This was not the case…...
After eight months, a member of the club suggested I pursue an apprenticeship and training with Allianz, a German insurance firm. Such a decision would benefit me in several ways: my commute was reduced from 80 km to 4 km, and the possibility of financial stability was enticing. So I cast my doubts aside and became (apologies to my fellow colleagues in the insurance business) a part of the most boring industry in the world.
From 2008 to 2010, I didn’t get much of a chance to experience the world, as I was working as an account manager for an insurance company during the day and did my insurance training and studied for university in the evening.
When I finished my insurance training in 2010, I found myself at a crossroad. I did not see myself in this industry - at least not in a long-term position - and also wanted to give up my studies, which were time consuming and tedious. Again, I was just short of the goal of finishing an academic goal after I had invested three years of my life and study fees amounting to very much money. This was a lot to risk, as these decisions about career and job are usually made at a much younger age.
As the television industry was increasingly less stable, I decided to become my own boss, and in 2011 I founded an insurance company where I can advise and support clients with their business plans.
Sometimes one sets out to find a dream job and sometimes they find it. After much time, many detours and meandering, I found a dream life rather than a dream job. I used to live to work and gave my body little respite from work. Today, I work to live. Work is a means to an end, and I find my joy in each moment and each memory that I can gather.