My Bread & Butter, my Cage!
Have you ever felt like the stuff you are good at is sometimes the same stuff that's holding you back from growing and discovering new things? I had and still do. I have been working as an online ESL teacher for almost four years now. I started this job when I was in my second year at the university. I was not compelled by anyone to do so, not even my parents. It was my own decision to study and work at the same time as influenced by some of my friends who did the same. It honestly didn't feel like I was working because I only conducted classes whenever I feel like it. My fees and allowance were still shouldered by my parents so I suggested paying for the rent to somehow make things a bit easier for them.
I didn't have high hopes about this job because I used to hate talking to people. No offense, but I guess my fellow introverts at the back can relate. I thought I wouldn't last for long but it kinda grew on me. I realized that this is what I like doing so I started getting serious about it. The majority of my classes were with adult people: professionals, students, graduate students, grandmas, and grandpas, name it! And no, I am not into kids, to be honest. I started to feel like I am at my best whenever I converse with people. I even feel like I have traveled a lot because of how my students proudly talk about their lives, culture, beliefs, local cuisines, and religions. It's a two-way learning process.
I forgot to mention that I studied Civil Engineering. I could tell that being an ESL teacher in some way, changed my focus and I was left unsure about how to adjust my sails. Instead of thinking about taking the board exam, getting hired by a construction firm, and working in the field that I was studying, all I was imagining about is getting English certificates that I could use to teach in a non-native English-speaking country. "Why didn't you change your degree program then?", you may ask. I honestly don't know how to answer that. It might be because I didn't want to disappoint my parents and put their money to waste. Now that I'm already out of school, I am still doing my ESL job, full-time. I'm starting to feel like it's stopping me from trying other things that might be for me too, because of how comfortable and good I am at it. It has become my comfort zone and I've caged myself inside it to the point where I'd believe it's the only thing I am capable of doing. I can't even imagine working outside my house because I have been working from home for the past 3+ years.
The bottom line is that I am honestly still confused about what to do next. My bread and butter for a long time had me in a box and instilled a fear in me to go out. The salary and experience satisfy me so much so that I refuse to consider applying for another job. After all, I ended up disappointing a lot of people around me because of not being what they've expected me to be.
Thank you for reading, friends! I would love to know if you had experienced the same dilemma and what you did about it. It would help me big time! And that would be all for tonight. Toodle loo! ♥
Sometimes the comfort that we get from something or place we stay make us feel at home and even when our heart says we wanted to try something else, we get scared. Hope you don't allow yourself to stay in that box for so long hehe