Monday, April 4, 2011


For some of us, ambition is what drives us to get up in the morning. Many of my actions have been based in ambition. The ambition to get ahead at work, the ambition to retire doing something I enjoy, etc. But you know what; screw it. It's not worth it.

My job

The position I would have striven for in the long-term has closed. That's not the way management would put it, but everyone else can see it's closed. And the short-term goal of just getting off of back-end projects and onto more front-end and UI stuff is closed as well. Questions about it just go completely ignored. I was originally stuck on production support work because I was too good. I could pick up any project written by any of the contractors that had left or whatever and get it working. But now I've lost all of the skills for new project. I'm getting further and further behind the development curve because I'm forced to continue working on projects that are 2 or 3 generations old. At the same time, since it has finally drained all ambition, it's not bad enough to make it worth looking for a new job. A catch 22 of sorts.

My photography

I love taking the pictures, but that's about it. I definitely don't want to spend any more time on my website, and my wife is completely and vehemently against me paying anyone else to do it. I could still pay them, but it would just be swapping one thing making me miserable with another. I also have found that I have to find some way to improve my creativity. In high school, I was doodling and creating all the time. Now, not so much. The creativity I do have is too large. I have a few ideas for entire complicated shots, but the creativity for the small improvements to standard simple shots isn't there. My nature shots are alright, but they are just random luck. Most of the things that I find interesting won't actually make good shots. Or maybe they will, and I am just missing that spark that will make it translate to print well. I'd like to be able to do portraits and such, maybe eventually do aspiring-model portfolios (taking pictures of women ranging from half-naked to naked wouldn't be bad either), but I don't have the skills in that area. I'll still work on it some, of course. I'll take some photography courses at the community college, and I'll go over the David Hobby and Joe McNally DVDs. But I'm not going to let that ruin my free time.

My t-shirts

Let's face it, that was never going anywhere anyway. I only have two designs and another in the thought stages. Even if I managed to get a steady stream of traffic and sales, three shirts are never going to make enough to live off of. And it's another thing I need to have someone else market. I don't have time during the day, because I'm at work. I don't want to do it in the evenings, because it's not enjoyable. I could hire a salesman, but again my wife is vehemently against me spending money for ideas she didn't come up with. You'd think a former financial manager with an accounting degree would be able to understand that you can use commissioned sales to keep from paying sales people out of your own pocket, but she just can't grasp that for some reason. So even that isn't worth the effort of listening to her shrew-on about it.

So, long story short, it has gotten to the point that the ambition to make my life better has actually made it worse. It hit me when I bought a book while I was on vacation and decided to take the time to read it. I remembered how relaxing it was to actually be able to sit and do something enjoyable. It's been months since I had been able to. I realized that all of my efforts were only succeeding in preventing me from having the time to just sit down after work and read a book.

So, I'm done. And for those of you striving to improve your lot, you might want to stop, take a deep breath, and determine how bad your lot actually is. It may be that you need to continue to struggle and strive. But you may find that, like me, you just need to relax and let it ride.

By the way, the photography DVDs came in today, so I'll let you know how those are when I get a chance to look them over.

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