It has been years since I felt like I had a good view of what I wanted. I'm almost 25 now, and while my personal relationships are fulfilling and pleasing, my professional life and work ethic has gradually formed into a rancid dumpster. When I was young, around 15, or 16, when I wasn't playing games I had the yearn to work with technology, program, and learn about security. Yet, I did not instill into myself a work ethic or discipline that yielded results. Therefore, when I went to college, I floundered horribly. Inter-personally, I actually felt like I flourished. I met great friends, had many good experiences, but this was all underneath the fact that Computer Science coursework was soul crushing, and the idea of being a software engineer was too intimidating for me to handle.
I have a horrible habit of romanticizing what I believe to be some tech industry Gods. Peter Norvig, John Carmack. Moxie Marlinspike, Paul Graham, Rob Pike. I look up to these people even though I have nothing in common with them. I've never created anything of importance, even to this day. I get beat down by the idea that I can't compare to these people, that I can't even come close. Yet, I simply cannot stick to one skill, hobby, or something that I am trying to learn. However, I have a chronic lack of focus that while does not seem clinical, just simply unrefined. I try and tell myself it's not too late, and while that might be not be true for some things, the inevitability of life will eventually make that true for all things. Now I am old enough that I can psyche myself out with things that I will now never be able to accomplish, like being a progamer, or a pro athlete. Is that what I even want now? No. Yet, fear of missing out, or dread from having missed out, is very real.
Yet, I am still making the same mistakes I have been my whole life. I can't commit to one interest, and because of this lack of commitment, and this refusal to work hard, outside of my base cognitive skills I do not have something I am 'good' at. I'm at the point of my life now where being good or serviceable at games isn't enough (cause I've never been amazing). I was told once that if all else fails, if I can't force myself to do something, then all I need to do is suffer long enough for that need to finally present itself. Yet, all my life I have found the easiest, decent paying jobs. I'm not a software dev, but I work low level IT. It's no stress, the schedule is a bit unusual, but otherwise I shouldn't be complaining as much as I do now. The simple fact is that I'm unfulfilled, and unchallenged. I'm stuck between the cognitive dissonance of wanting to do something fulfilling, but not feeling up to being challenged.
I find my thoughts changing almost daily... Will working a harder tech job fulfill me? Should I be content and happy staying in the low-stress, dead-end job I'm in now? Should I move out of the state I've lived in my entire life, and see somewhere new? Should I welcome and accept change, or continue my conservative life-style choices of safety and comfort? Should I change careers entirely?
Every time I have a potential answer to one of those questions, another question pops up, and I am overwhelmed by the possibilities. The reality is that I'm lost. I'm floating around in the ocean. I may not be entirely alone, but so many people now are moving in their direction, with purpose and pride, but I haven't even charted a course. It was enough a few years ago to not know what I wanted, because there were so many of my peers that also didn't know. Now, whether they are fulfilled or not, they have a direction that they're striving toward. For the first time I recognize I have truly stalled out, and have barely any momentum any longer.