Lauri Liimatta

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Wood for thought

More than a year ago I wrote a post about my travels in Portugal and my search for a new home. Until recently I've been thinking that if only I can find that one country or city then things would fall in place. However lately I've come to realise that where I am based isn't the solution nor the problem.

Instead of looking at where I could go to I've been taking a more critical look at what I'm actually doing. For years I've talked with my friends and acquitances about how I (and many of them) dislike client work. Despite our complaints none of us seem to do anything to change that. We run on that same path a year after a year because we know it's safe and what we really want to do is not.

Earlier this year I wrote about my conflicting relationship with technology. Sometimes I wonder if my dislike for technology and client work stem from the fact that maybe I just haven't had the chance to work on the right projects. On the other hand I feel like even that might be an excuse to keep me from pursuing what I really want to do.

Last year I took a stab at doing a woodworking project after a long hiatus. I thoroughly enjoyed it but didn't do anything after it because I didn't have access to any place where I could create more. The craving for doing things with my hands and without the help of any digital tools never left me though.

A few weeks ago I got the chance to start another woodworking project and again I've enjoyed it a lot. So much in fact that I've started to wonder whether or not woodworking could be something that I could pursue professionally. Woodworking to me seems to be that perfect marriage between creative and physical work. When 2 hours of work feels like 20 minutes it's hard not to start to think that I've stumbled onto something.

However part of my mind thinks “why would you leave web development? It's safe and you'll never find a job in woodworking!” but at the same time I also think “do I really want to keep doing something that I don't enjoy that much anymore just for the sake of feeling of safety? Will I regret this years later?”. After all that so called feeling of safety is just that, a feeling.

As regrets are something that I fear the most in life I've decided to try take an approach towards this career switch, if you will, which I find responsible. My plan is to try to keep consistently working on my own projects and any other projects that I may get my hands on to build up experience. I'm hoping to do an internship or apprenticeship for a company as well and then maybe in 5 years time I can do woodworking part-time along with some web development work.

It's obviously a very long term goal and a lot can change during that time but I feel like I'm finally working on something to better my future instead of just complaining about it.

Patience may be a rare occurrence in this day and age but with this I'm going to need to practice a lot of it. With patience and consistent work on the craft I believe even a goal this ambitious can be accomplished.

ps. A little podcast gem here. Especially 7:50-9:50:

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