The answer is, that which I haven't done, or wasn't brave enough to do before. So, I'm working as a line cook in a San Francisco restaurant.
Perspective is everything. Those who know me well, congratulate me and look on with awe. Many of those in the industry whom I work with, wonder what I'm doing. I don't feel I really owe an explanation to either side. I'm just muddling through to be honest, but I'm ok with that and where I'm going with it.
And where am I going? I'm simply seeking balance and satisfaction. It's the latter that requires a shift in priorities. I want to be out of debt and only own things I really want and enjoy. Everything else is not necessary. I've figured out what's important to me. I skip owning an expensive TV, in order to have money to buy good kitchen tools. I thrift shop first for things I need, but occasionally, I also find things I want in thrift stores. These practices allow me to dedicate almost 50% of my take home to debts. They make me feel like I'm living smarter.
It's a real challenge. I'm still in transition because I'm still wondering how long I can work in a job that's so physical. But, every day, and every week I manage to maintain, I gain a little more confidence that I'm doing the right thing. I make less money, but I feel like I have more freedom.
I have the freedom to not have to know everything or be in charge at my job. I have the freedom to not feel as though I have to spend lots of money to impress anyone. And, if I keep to my budget, in a year, I'll have the freedom to maybe not work as hard as I currently do.
I was in a dark place for a long time, finally saw the light, and rushed towards it. Now I can see there are options for the life I want, as long as I make smart choices.