Nearly four months have passed since I re-started working after completing a year of historical study. As I settle in, I can't help contemplating what the next steps should be.
For many years there has always been a long list of plans and projects in my mind, although very few of them, unfortunately, could ever become reality. Long-term priorities are yet on another list of the must-dos.
Despite all the setbacks, challenges and frustrations over the past few years, at least there is one thing for which I should be grateful - alarming signals reminding me to re-evaluate and re-define what my priorities should be. I am even more grateful that I had an opportunity to take a meaningful and rewarding break, during which I could sort out my thoughts and get better prepared for the days and years ahead.
Although the workload during the peak season in the next couple of weeks and months remains uncertain, it seems more manageable than what I used to have. If this were truly how things turn out, then it should not be too much of aggression to pursue the next goal on the priority list. When it comes to a commitment of six to eight years in a row, however, I still think I'm not confident and resolute enough to say yes at this point of time. For some reason I have very little confidence in my preparations so far. Despite all the time and effort spent on the research, I have absolutely no idea whether my proposal is going to sell. Worse still, I have yet to figure out how it can be improved. Perhaps I just need to be a bit more patient to see what is going to happen in the next couple of weeks and months before making up my mind. Perhaps all I need, after all, is just an irresistible trigger just like what I had two years ago.
But most recently there emerges another warning from within. Over the past few days I found myself extremely tired and therefore hard to concentrate, as if the brain has gone on strike. No matter how much or how little I slept, I still felt far from being fully recovered. I'm not sure if it happens because I have driven myself a bit too hard in jogging over the past three weeks. I'm not sure either if it has anything to do with other hidden causes. Physical fitness and mental power are now very important to me, not just for my overall well-being but also determinant to whether the next goal could ever be accomplished. At the same time, I must admit that I do enjoy the recent carefree status. Spending time on no-brainers such as working out, going to the cinema, meeting friends and even blogging at home is genuinely soothing and comforting. It seems questionable whether I'm now physically and mentally fit enough to take up the next challenge that is going to drag on for six to eight years.
This is how I get stuck between the long-standing desire of achieving something and the immediate advantage of having a more relaxed and balanced life.