What’s next?

“Over time, I’ve become increasingly aware that the world is divided into people who wait for others to give them permission to do the things they want to do and people who grant themselves permission.”  -Tina Seelig, What I wish I knew when I was 20  

I’ve been thinking, lately…(and maybe not enough acting)

That I constrict myself to what I think others want me to be. This has been the case with the (few) relationships that I’ve had, and is the case with some of my friendships as well. I meekly go with the flow until I realize I had a choice all along.  Sometimes, it’s too late. Now is one of those times. I always planned to go home after 1 year in Korea, or at least I did before I came here. Now, the plan is likely the same, but this time I’m going to give a legitimate reason. Before this, I was telling people the reason was because of a previous obligation. True, it was there, but it wasn’t until Mom was saying “Brooke, (family and friends still call me that sometimes) you can’t let one day determine your entire life.  There might be some nice pictures, but…”


This whole time, I told people why I was going home after one year, and the reactions ranged from veiled disagreement to saying I was a great friend. No one said I had to say that was the reason I was going. I just kept saying it. Now, with deadlines looming, I don’t want to have to work at a private school I can’t be sure of or renew my present contract. I’ll be honest with people and tell them I don’t really have a plan. I don’t really know what’s next. I’m going home because I waited too long and I like knowing things in advance.

I’m going to learn from this failure though. Have you guys ever heard of a thing called a “Failure Resume”? Apparently the lady who wrote the book I referenced above, Tina Seelig, took the idea from another professor, Liz Kisenwether.   I’m annoyed at myself for not listening to what I might have wanted. In the future, I’m going to beg for forgiveness if I have to, instead of asking for permission. (not to say that coming here in any way was a failure, or that coming back is me being a failure)

Life goes on. (And so does the job search!!)


7 thoughts on “What’s next?”

  1. I don’t think it’s too late for you to turn it into a success! But I get it that you like knowing things in advance. I expected a lot of people to resist when I let them know my plan to travel the world for a year after Korea – but was surprised with how few negative comments I got! Besides the occasional “are you sure you can afford that?” (The answer, by the way, is no, I’m definitely not sure – just taking it as it comes!) I got overwhelmingly positive responses, even from my parents who I was sure would be resistant (being away from home for so long). So I definitely agree with the beg for forgiveness approach – you will most likely only get good things in return!

  2. Thanks Rachel!
    Technically if hagwons didn’t bother me and I really loved my school (and it does have its good points) then it wouldn’t be too late. But like I said, I like knowing a few things in advance. 😛 In the big scheme of things, it isn’t the end of the world. But I know it’s a pattern of mine that I’m determined to stop. 🙂 My next goal is maybe to do this again, but in Spain. It’s a risky thing, going back, when I could easily stay here another year. But I think I’ll go for it.

    Thanks for the comment..and for the support. I bet your year around the world will be awesome! You and Jeff are lucky to have each other to travel with 😀

    1. Ahhh, got it. Spain would be so cool! I think Jeff has a friend teaching English there. I say go for it!

      And yeah, we are pretty lucky to both love travel so much. But honestly, I would travel solo if I had to! I have done it before and it is really freeing (you can do anything you want!) and gives you a nice boost of self confidence!

      1. Hey Rachel, I know this is a while after the post, but do you guys know how Jeff’s friend got their position there in Spain, if they went through a company?

  3. Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.
    Winston Churchill

    I am sure you will find your “next step” and it may be Korea, it may be the US or Europe. Whatever it will be; you’ll do great!

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