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Monday, December 9, 2013

How to Decide What to Do with Your Life

I read a blog a few weeks ago that pondered the age-old question: How do you decide what to do with your life?

That's actually harder and yet simpler than it seems.

The benefit of a few extra decades has given me the wisdom to know that if you want to be happy, you should venture into wherever your passion leads you.

For me, that can get a little complex because nearly everything fascinates me. Since we're all granted only a finite number of days, I've had to choose carefully.

The blogger cited someone wiser than himself and offered this advice: Look at the books on your bookshelves. What topics come up most?

On my bookshelves, I have books on ancient history, art, animal husbandry, dogs, gardening, simpler living, archeology, the paranormal, painting and writing. I also have a lot of romance novels (heavy on the historicals). I used to have a lot of science fiction but my tastes have shifted over the years.

So if I were to disseminate my interests I have any number of careers to choose from--many of which already appear on my life's resume.

I think looking at your library is a pretty good indicator on where your passions lie. We read what interests us most.

What's in your library? Is there something you'd like to try (or write about) that you haven't yet?

30 comments:

Mike Keyton said...

Just checked. Phew, no porn books. That's something.

Angela Brown said...

Yeah, my library is all genre fiction. I think there's one Chicken Soup for the Soul volume b/c I won it from another blogger. Give me fantasy, sci-fi, YA/NA, romance and action. I also have some writing related books. So I suppose I'm headed on the road I should be on, though a bit bumpy with lots of obstacles :-)

Maria Zannini said...

Mike: ROTFL! I wasn't expecting that one. :)

Maria Zannini said...

Angela: I think God puts bumps on the road to remind you to stay awake. :)

Stacy McKitrick said...

One bookcase is stuffed with Stephen King and Dean Koontz books (and it over-flowith). The other bookcases have various types of romance and thrillers.

Up until 2008, I had very few romances in my bookcase (I got sick of the historicals and didn't think there WAS any other kind!). It wasn't until I discovered PARANORMAL romance when the spark to write hit me. So glad it did!

Maria Zannini said...

Stacy: I understand completely. I was over 50 before I read my first romance. Everything happens in its time.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Funny, you should say that. I have a lot of Christian books, romance books, and YA.

But this is the year I'm going to write a YA. I told my CPs, so it must be true. LOL

Maria Zannini said...

Jennifer: I think our libraries define us. Glad you're going to try YA. I think you'll be really good at it.

Sarah Ahiers said...

That's a genius idea about looking at you books to try and figure some things out

Maria Zannini said...

Sarah: All the best ideas are simple and almost always right in front of us.

Marlene Dotterer said...

Lots and lots and LOTS of science fiction. Lots of fantasy. A big sprinkling of chess and other game books. A healthy dose of word and language books. A heaping stack of math and science. Some travel, history,architecture, art, comics... we also have a collection of maps.

All of this is why our rule is to only buy ebooks, at least as much as possible. We have one room dedicated to the SF and fantasy collection, with two additional bookcases filled with Star Trek Novels. The rest is scattered throughout the house on five other bookcases. We're hopeless.

Jackie Burris said...

Given my passion for Crime Dramas, Mystery Thrillers should probably be a PI. But given my love of all things Paranormal maybe that should be Supernatural Investigaor.

What will I be when grown was never planned Maria it just so happens I love being able to stay home and be a "household engineer" because while my interests are many and varied none ever made me as happy as cooking and cleaning do.

Karen Jones Gowen said...

Wow! What a blog post title! It's a little late for me to decide if I haven't already, but I'm pretty happy with the direction my life has taken the past few years.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

My book shelves certainly reflect what I like to write but my passion for fitness and athletics led to my day job as well as an interest in health and science.

Maria Zannini said...

Marlene: I hear you on the books. When we moved to our present house, I moved (by myself) 40 boxes of books. Never again. I gave away a ton of books and only buy paper for nonfiction now.

Maria Zannini said...

Jackie: You gave me a great idea for a story! How about a book reviewer who solves crime on the side! :o)

I think it could work.

Maria Zannini said...

Karen: I had visited a blog recently where the blogger lamented on whether she had chosen the right field for herself. I'm going to assume she was young. LOL.

It would be sad if she were my age and trying to figure that out.

Maria Zannini said...

Susan: And because of that, I'll bet you get a great deal of satisfaction from your work.

I've never worried much about the money. If it was something I loved to do, I knew the money would catch up eventually.

Jenny Schwartz said...

Looking at our bookshelves to understand our passions is such a good idea. Of course, I'm easily sidetracked into re-reading old favourites once I'm there :)

Shelley Munro said...

My bookshelves are stuffed full of travel guides and historical research books. Funnily enough I was thinking today that sports medicine would be something that I would have enjoyed.

Maria Zannini said...

Jenny: Which reinforces what you're most passionate about. :) I thought it was very clever. I'm surprised I didn't snap to it earlier.

Maria Zannini said...

Shelley: Travel, of course! But sports medicine? You have a secret side you haven't told us about, Shelley. :)

raelynbarclay said...

It depends which room I'm in ;)

Lots of genre fiction (mostly romance), cookbooks, writing craft, scrapbook and photography, Celtic mythology and history, Native American mythology and history, and gardening. Should I count the knitting, cross-stitch, and quilt pattern books? LOL.

I'd say I'm answering the passion call all right though I'd like to explore my mythology/history more.

Interesting.

Maria Zannini said...

Raelyn: I love mythology! I've had friends who have started writing fiction using mythology as a base, but most have never finished them.

Barbara Ann Wright said...

I'm pretty much where I want to be. The only next step would be to actually live a fantasy adventure, but the way I write them, I'm not sure I'd like that. Everyone wears the same pants for far too long and no one ever goes to the bathroom.

Maria Zannini said...

Barbara: I'm pretty sure I'll run out of life before I've tried everything I want to do. LOL.

Might have to come back and finish my bucket list.

Suzanne Brandyn said...

Hi Maria
I have a heap of genre fiction novels, women's fiction, gardening, the bible, novella's on a variety of subjects, The Twilight series, Nora Roberts, and on the bottom shelf magazines. And yes, I really want to write a paranormal at some stage. I'm still aiming for my goal, and believe it will happen. After all, good things come to those who wait. lol. :)

Maria Zannini said...

Suzanne: I can't believe you haven't written any paranormal yet. It's right up your alley after mysteries.

LD Masterson said...

Oh dear. My bookshelves are filled with murder mysteries and crime dramas. But I really don't want to be a cop. Or a murderer. And I certainly don't want to be the victim.

Maria Zannini said...

Linda: But you can always be a private investigator, a research assistant, a psychologist, an FBI profiler, or even a librarian. All hail the librarian!

It's that innate ability to see beyond the superficial.

Your interests gives you a snapshot of where your strengths and passions lie.