What Am I Doing With My Life?

As one does – I’ve had so much going on in my life as well as so many worries and concerns. I’ve wanted to sit down and write it all down for the last week, but my head has been cloudy and messy.

I’ve only been into my third one-year contract in Korea for two months and ordinarily I’d have more than enough time to decide whether or not I’d like to stay here for a fourth year. However, I’m currently studying my teaching degree with a South African University which requires me to do a 10 week practical back home.

This has to be done next year, otherwise my 3 years of studying will become obsolete. This has caused such anxiety for me because working in Korea, the big intake is in March and again in September. My current contract expires in March and if I were to go out for 10 weeks, coming back would mean I’d have to find a new job as well as a LOT of red tape in a period that isn’t favourable for teachers to find jobs. My school has offered me the opportunity to not take any vacation nor sick days for my year contract, and go home 10 weeks early to do my practical, to come back and sign a second contract at my current school. I have been so indecisive about this. Mainly because there are so many pros and cons to both staying and going. I need to sit down and write these down, because for me – writing my worries out relieves me of my anxiety.

I’d considered option A (staying in Korea for a fourth year at the same school, without any vacation or sick days) or option B (continuing my contract as normal, with vacation and sick days and going home in March for good or finding a new job in Korea). However, I recently have decided on option C which is teaching English in Thailand.

So, here goes – pros and cons.

1. Option A: Staying in Korea for a fourth year without vacation/sick days:

Pros:

I do not have to worry about finding a new job.

I will have a job until I graduate with my teaching degree.

Benefits: good pay, keeping my apartment.

Cons:

I do not get any vacation or sick days, and I really want to travel this year.

I am not 100% happy at my current job. My co teacher is manipulative, bossy, sometimes difficult to work with and also does not think that I have the ability to do my own lesson plans or my own teaching style – which I hate and do not agree with.

2. Option B: Continuing my contract as normal, with vacation/sick days and going home for good.

Pros:

I get vacation/sick days.

I get to go home.

Cons:

Jobs are very difficult to find.

Money.

I do not have a drivers licence, place to stay.

My parents live far away from the city in a small town.

3. Option C: Continuing my contract as normal, coming home for 10 weeks and going to teach English in Thailand for 1 year starting May.

Pros:

I get vacation/sick days.

I get to go home for 10 weeks and do my practical and make it in time for the intake in May.

I get to live in a new country.

Cons:

I don’t make a lot of money in Thailand, so not much saving.

So, there we have it. I guess at this point, I am leaning towards C. I just really would appreciate some constructive advice or opinions. This is so typical me though, I always want the approval or opinion of others. I really need to work on this. I suppose this is a good time.

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3 thoughts on “What Am I Doing With My Life?

  1. I’m Spanish living in SA /CT for many yrs -love it with all my heart, its my adopted country. I work all over the world being based here in CT . I have worked in Asia many times over the last 12 yrs, but most time i spent in any Asian country at one stretch was 3 months. Felt always a stranger in Asia (China,Korea,Cambodia, Vietnam,Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand) I just never got the cultural “thing” …even though I always try hard to learn and understand people and culture wherever I go/work. Mostly could not get the “saving face concept” … Must say, Thailand is my favorite Asian country by a long shot as far as their tolerance and kinder gentler ways with foreigners… But know I could not really live there for extended time.have expat friends who love living there but even after more than 20years (an SA couple in one particular case) feel they will never be really accepted there by the locals… So they form tight expat circles and live an isolated life… Seems to me you may love a place like Bangkok after yr Korean experiences … Thailand seems the most forgiving of Asian cities and people I have been to and cared to stay the longest in. It’s not too expensive at all and life is more chilled out than somewhere like Korea or Singapore…a gentler life. There is a big expat community and they seem very open to newcomers because they almost stick together and somehow give each other moral support… I always wonder though why people bother to go to a different culture and not integrate

    Of course I would say to my own daughter “come home” and build up a life in yr own amazing country amongst your beautiful people who care for you…SA needs the youth to lead it into the next stage of its infant democracy … so you can see what my heartfelt advice would be …But I also understand your need to experience and travel… So from the choices you present , I would secondly recommend you go for the Thai option mainly because I think you will be happier in that gentler and slightly more open Asian culture. Also maybe you need a new challenge and new environment … My experiences in Korea have been generally good, but it can be a tough and unforgiving society that places a great deal of importance on “face value” and hardly ever seem to get into the inner “stuff” that makes people tick.
    Whatever you decide , be kind to yourself … Love and Peace x Jorge

    1. Thank you so much for your wonderful comment. I really do appreciate. I’ve still not made a decision re: next year but I am trying not to stress about it right now. Thanks again, and give Cape Town a kiss from me. I really do miss it and wish I could start a great life over there.

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