This is a post inspired by pure frustration.
I write it because there are at least a dozen in my immediate circle who’ve wanted to make a transition out of their present situation but have fallen victim to the path of least resistance. I’ve also learned that for every problem I know of first hand, there are thousands who share the same troubles. If I can reroute the routine of at least one person hesitant to change, my time has been well spent.
But first, let me clarify a couple things:
- I don’t write this post out of any sense of personal superiority. This isn’t about me. This is about situations. One situation is living life as a victim, constantly fearing what could possibly going wrong, and drowning in regret. The other situation is taking chances, allowing yourself the opportunity to fail, setting and striving for goals, and turning the less than ideal scenarios into learning situations. I’ve lived on both sides. I know first hand that the latter is superior.
- Although I use San Diego as the subject of this post, I’m not trying to say that it’s objectively better either. I know plenty of people who would truthfully not enjoy it here (see: Gingers) (yes, that’s coming from a semi-ginger). I genuinely get bummed out if I go long periods without the sun, am exposed to temperatures below 20 F, or have to spend my weekends inside because a monsoon won’t let me play basketball. But, that’s just me.
Enough beating around the bush…I now present to you the Good Badger guide of
How To Move to San Diego
If while reading this, you hesitate and wonder, “wait, is he talking about me?”, the answer is yes. This is about you.
The bad news is I’m calling you out. I’m getting on your case. I’m done taking your crap.
The good news is I want to help. Making you happy makes me happy. You complete me. You had me at hello. (Jerry McGuire was on TBS last night)
But certainly a project as large as moving out to a vacation city like San Diego couldn’t be broken down into concrete steps meant for the masses. Actually, it can.
1. Set a Goal
Sorry to get so Tony Robbins (aka the multi-millionare motivational speaker who resides in San Diego) on you, but the importance of goal setting can’t be overstated. You need to both write your goal down on paper (or blog) and tell as many people as you can. Make your goal a throbbing sense of pride for you. Don’t worry about how you’ll be perceived by others. Those who matter will support you and those who don’t envy your ambition.
Make sure that when setting your goal, you are both very clear in what it is that you want (i.e. “move to San Diego” versus “get out of current town X”) and you give yourself a realistic time frame for when it needs to be accomplished. I’m convinced there is some sort of supernatural force that helps create a desired reality if you’re serious enough about setting goals and assigning them deadlines.
2. Stop Making Excuses
I know all of the reasons you can’t move to San Diego. You don’t have a job lined up. You have no idea what you’ll do for a living situation. You haven’t saved enough money. You want to pay off your debt before moving. You [insert generic problem] + [implied sense of self-defeat].
This past weekend Alex Montoya, a good friend of mine and fellow employee of the San Diego Padres, ran his first marathon. True he was only one segment of a relay team who completed the race. That’s one aspect he had going in his favor. But there were a couple aspects working against him. Actually, to be precise there were 3 things working against him. Limbs. Born a triple amputee out of Columbia, South America, Alex can now add a marathon to his long list of accomplishments. This list also includes, graduating with a full scholarship from Notre Dame, carrying the Olympic torch, working his dream job as the head of Latino marketing for his favorite baseball team, and being a published author amongst many other things (I left off the ability to memorize every phone number ever created).
Sorry, what was your reason for not being able to move to a new city again…..?
Instead of making excuses, allocate that energy to finding answers.
3. Utilize Your Resources
One reason making a big life transition seems so daunting is because a lot of people fall under the false assumption that they have to do everything themselves. Don’t let your pride impede your dreams.
I was lucky enough to have a job lined up prior to moving into paradise, but to take full credit for the position would be somewhere between ignorance and delusion. While at the University of Wisconsin there were two things I was felt strongly about: 1) I needed to be in San Diego and 2) I wanted to be in sports. The first was a necessity, therefore it was going to happen regardless. The second was a hope. Although I’m a passionate sports maniac, I wasn’t going to let it get in the way of my escaping Ice Hell.
But I figured, as long as society was going to force me to get a job, I might as well find one that I actually enjoy. Although UW didn’t offer any sports specific degrees, there were still plenty of valuable resources freely available to me. I joined a Sports Business Club, attended one of their seminars, introduced myself to the presenter (the general manager on behalf of the presenting company), and got an internship with said company. Once on the job, I was repeatedly audible (some may say “annoying”) about the fact that I wanted to be in San Diego. Turns out that my boss used to work with one of the higher-ups for the Padres.
Here I am.
The point is, without the sports business club, or its seminar, or the presenter who made himself available to questions afterward, or the internship which was benevolent enough to help set up an interview, I would still be fighting upstream to get a job as awesome as working inside of a baseball stadium. I didn’t get the job because I was the best at what I do (whatever it is that I do), I got the job because I was good at using my resources.
Find your resources. Use them.
4. Be Flexible
I don’t mean in terms of staying the course with your goal. Stay strong to your vision.
However, you do need to stay flexible in your approach.
Insanity has been defined as doing the same thing and expecting different results. If you had a nickle for every time you’ve heard that cliche (not an actual definition) you’d have enough money to fund the first few months in your new vacation homeland. As much as I hate cliches, this one is worth its weight in gold (bonus irony points).
If money is a problem, maybe your routine of unsatisfying work and stress blowing sessions at the bar on the weekend is stunting your progress? If needing a job secured before moving (which I don’t believe) is what you’re holding out for, perhaps monster.com isn’t going to be your get out of jail free card. If wanting to see how your dying relationship with your significant other plays out, maybe rehashing the same arguments and following the same procedures isn’t going to get you to a more solid ground?
Serious change in your life can’t occur until you start implementing change in the more common situations. If your weeks start to blend together, clearly you’re following the same routines. Take a second to see where this routine train is headed, and ask yourself, do you like the destination? If you don’t, pull a Christian Slater and blow that train up.
5. Soak in Accomplishment
If you really follow through with the previous four steps, #5 is an inevitability. Don’t let set-backs derail you (I love train metaphors). Take a second to consider the alternative of not following through with your dream and find what will motivate you to move in that direction.
————–end oversimplified breakdown——————–
The above serves more as a rough blue print for accomplishment than a road map to the Pacific. You probably have no interest in to moving to San Diego. That wasn’t the goal of this post (it’s actually an upcoming post).
However, in the off chance you’re reading this, and a change of pace is something you’ve been desiring, please stop punishing yourself. You only live once. Come learn what it feels like to say “70 degrees”, “outside”, and “December” in the same sentence.