Quarter Life Sabbatical


“To pursue a calling, you must find it. To find it, you must sample widely”
Sunil Kumar

“If you’re not living on the edge, you’re taking up too much space”
Brad Feld

“Is working harder at this the best solution to the problem”
Rich Dad, Poor Dad

“Realize that time will never stop. NEVER. You will never be younger again. It’s like being on a train with no stops that’s always leading you farther from home… Want to be epic? Just do epic S%#&”
The Universe Doesn’t Give a Flying F about You

The Power of Time Off: https://www.ted.com/talks/stefan_sagmeister_the_power_of_time_off

My older brother Michael has three philosophies:

  1. Be able to pass the airport test. Can you carry a conversation with a stranger in an airport for 3 hours?
  2. Don’t be boring at S%#&.
  3. Do what you can never do again.

And I have one of my own:

Whatever you do, you get good at. Whatever you’re good at, you get hired for. Whatever you get hired for, you’ll spend a huge amount of time doing and get even better at doing. So you might as well start off doing what you like so you can get hired to do something you like.

The Tesla Phenomenon: for several of my fellow former interns at Tesla and me, we saw Tesla as the coolest place in the world to work. “If we get there”, we thought, “We’ll have made it.” We all had a great experience interning at Tesla and may go back, but now that we’ve worked there, a curious question begs to be asked. “We’ve seen what we thought was the top; what’s next? Where from here?”

All of these things have been connecting in my head and compelling me to take time this summer to disconnect, travel, work on my personal projects, and determine what I want to work on next. My answer has been to embark on a Quarter Life Sabbatical. While in the strictest sense, a sabbatical is one year taken off of normal work every seven years, I’m seeking 3 months off after 18 years of schooling.

As reasonable as this sounds when put in those terms, I’m surprised at how many of my friends jumped straight into full time jobs right after school. I do not want to do this. I want spend time to pursue some of my own ideas, to see if they hold any water, to conquer any hesitation of exploring projects I personally find interesting. I want to travel, to make myself uncomfortable, to see new ways of living, to be taught new ideas in a way that only travel can teach them. I want to look out into the world and find the companies worth working for, people doing great things, and problems worth solving.

This is all very idealistic and exploratory, but I’d rather err on this side of this than to make a cursory selection of a path after finishing university just because getting a job right away is the ‘normal’ thing to do.

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