I say it’s difficult, but it’s actually “very” difficult, especially if you don’t know how to steer the wheels to your new direction. Having a major shift or change in your life is indeed difficult, which oftentimes almost entirely impossible. Perhaps, some people can’t relate because you may not have such ‘big change’ or you’ve already planned your life well. So, I’ll just share with you a bit about myself and why I said ‘change is a difficult challenge to accept.’
I am a graduate of Bachelor of Science in Applied Physics – a five-year course, which a lot of people say it’s a very difficult course. I was able to survive it, though. However, I didn’t pursue a Master’s degree nor work in the academe or in an industry that directly needs everything I’ve learned at school. Instead, four months after graduation, I got a job at Accenture, Inc. I was trained in Financial Accounting and Controlling (FICO) aspect of the SAP software. Though it was difficult, all 25 of us were able to surpass the bootcamp.
Since the demand for FICO was low at the time we finished our training, some of us were re-trained, including me. Some chose JAVA, while I chose Software Testing together with the other 10. If I will choose between JAVA and Testing again, I will still choose Testing, as I’m geared towards this part. Thankfully, I was deployed to several projects after the training. And, until I resigned from the company, I was a software tester.
Why did I resign, you may ask? Well, a lot of times I became afraid that I don’t deserve the salary that I get. I saw my co-workers working so hard, yet I was very relaxed and still got the same salary. I tried to get more tasks, but there’s nothing more for me. I mean, our project was already stabilized. Yet, if I could have reached out to my senior leads, maybe it could have been a different story. Yet, on top of that fear, I decided to study abroad – in Korea to pursue a Master’s Degree in Neuroscience.
I resigned in March 2015, but I applied for the Korean Government Scholarship Program (KGSP) the next year. Unfortunately, I didn’t receive any feedback from the Korean Embassy. I don’t know if my application was received because I sent it via LBC or maybe my documents were not complete (which I thought they were.) Or, perhaps, my credentials weren’t enough and there were a lot of other applicants who were way better than I was. I didn’t apply again until now because I thought it was not for me and I was not ready.
So, what did I do after I resigned? I followed the footsteps of my brother – working online, signing up for Upwork.com. I had several clients (one of them still contacts me until now) and I enjoyed working without a schedule. Anytime of the day, if I’m in the mood to work, I can do so and earn money and work even in my pajamas. Since March 2015 until now, I am working online. Actually, something dawned on me last December 4, 2017. My friend, Ate Tess, introduced me to an organic farming organization in Cebu, Philippines, the Cebu Organic Agriculture Cooperative (COAC).
I attended their meeting and for the first time in a while, I felt overflowing excitement and joy. It’s as if I’d found my place on earth. So, in that same month, I decided to go home and started my farm. Now, the conflict began as I need to deliver my work to clients. Moreso, I needed to work hard to take responsibility for my mismanaged credit card, which many had a similar experience or were educated to use their CC wisely. As for me, I didn’t expect that the availability of the card would lead me into years of working hard just to pay for the compounding interest.
This is where complications begin. I want to have my own farm, but I need to keep my online work because I need to pay for the sins I’ve done before. I attended the Organic Agriculture Production short course where I met my boyfriend, who also has a passion for farming. He was a Marine Transportation graduate and I was an Applied Physics graduate, yet we both want to focus the remaining days of our lives into farming. [We even had a side bit trip while we took the short course.]
Now, the problem with shifting careers is how we’re going to get a job in the sector that we don’t have prior experience with. Yes, we have the National Certification II in Organic Agriculture Production, but it’s not enough to land a job – and we’re even eyeing for a job outside the country. Although I am a daughter of farmers and I spent most of my weekends and school vacations on the farm, I can’t put in in my resume.
Since we graduated last June 2018 until now, we were not blessed with the farm work that we are looking for. Part of which because the schedule and the demands of the farm work conflict my online work. We tried to build a small farm near our house, but we lack the finances and I can’t dedicate all my efforts to the farm, that’s why we decided to work for any farm first to earn money and have some capital.
Not only that it’s not easy to find a job, but some will even be shocked and question us, why we end up wanting to be a farmer. Some will underestimate us because they think we don’t have any knowledge about the farm. Still, some will belittle us of our decision that seems ‘unthinkable,’ but for us, it’s what can make us happy and content.
This lengthy story might be very boring, but all I’m saying is, don’t be afraid to change careers. Don’t be afraid to stand on what can make you happy and satisfied. Live your life the way you want it to be and not by how society defines you to be. Don’t freak out if you don’t have enough cash on your bank or if you don’t have a bank account at all. What matters is you do the thing that can make you happy and you are satisfied with it. After all, we don’t know if we can last until tomorrow. So, start living like you aren’t afraid to die.