30 Comments
Jan 5, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

This is brings up an interesting thing I've been struggling with myself. While I totally resonate with the idea we shouldn't be swayed by the opinion of others or be desperate for validation regarding the direction we're thinking of going, we're also tribal creatures, and relationships are at the heart of what makes life fulfilling, and our contributions meaningful. My thinking lately is that there is a spot in between caring and not caring what others think that is somewhat ambiguous and not easy to hold in mind simultaneously, but that's feels like the current challenge for me personally. Thanks for sharing your experience with this.

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Jan 5, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

"My main regret is seeking validation from other people." This speaks to me on many levels! Thank you for your vulnerability here.

"These days, I look to the future and try to live my life in a way that in a few years, I don’t look back and think, what if I started 5 years ago?" What a powerful perspective on life.

You learned so much from this experience, much more than any bootcamp could have taught you. Thank you for sharing your beautifully crafted story!

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Feb 1, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

I took the other side of this coin: I joined the bootcamp and then, worked as an engineer for five years. In all honesty, I enjoyed maybe half of those? Then I started feeling unfulfilled, unsatisfied, dull, grey and disillusioned. I'm now three months into a sabbatical trying to find other ideas of work. I love what you said that "no experience goes to waste". Whether we do or we don't, what really matters is how we reflect and what we take from the experience. And you've done that beautifully here.

If you're interested, I wrote about leaving golden handcuffs here: https://www.tobiwrites.com/p/unshackling-myself-from-golden-handcuffs

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Jan 20, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

My god this speaks to me on many levels. My whole childhood, up to probably 25 years old, any life decision I had, I would run by my dad.

To me he had the right model of the world, he knew what the right way to go about things was.

God bless his soul, my dad is a lovely, patient, smart man, but he was wrong about a lot of things. Specifically, the things that made me tick that he couldn't see, but I can't fault him for it.

Anyway, wonderful essay. Such an important inflection point, some people never get there ever.

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Jan 18, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

Such an earnest and insightful journey that speaks to my inner dialogue of should, coulda, woulda. I love your mindset of "no experience goes to waste." You remind me that every decision, pivot, and side step is a drop in the bucket of a life filled with learning.

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Jan 15, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

I love this. As someone who has attempted a career pivot, I can 100% relate to the desire to ask for approval from everyone I met with choices I am uncertain about. What I learn from many times attempting this is that if you are really interested in something, you would not need to ask for validation all the time and find drive within you <3 Glad you learn this too

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You are not alone! I am guilty of this in other ways. I appreciate your honesty and self-reflection. Cheers.

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Jan 7, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

This is so relatable. It does seem to happen less as I've gotten older but that psychological pressure to know I was making the best decision was crippling. Perhaps it's a feature of being simultaneously open-minded and risk averse lol. For a thoughtful treatment of the topic I read and would recommend Annie Duke's How To Decide.

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Jan 7, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

"I now realize that I should have sat down, made a decision and let fate play its hand. "

I think we often vastly underestimate our own intuition and ability to know exactly what we want and need, or at least what we don't. Learning to listen to it is definitely a journey!

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Jan 6, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

I related soooo much to your story. I also contemplated a coding bootcamp. It seemed like a sparkly venture that could help me make a big salary. I enrolled in numerous *free* coding courses and would start them with gusto, only to get bored and abandon them a couple days later. I definitely lost sleep contemplating investing thousands of dollars in a coding bootcamp that wouldn't guarantee anything!

When I decided to quit my last job, I didn't tell *anyone* -- not even those closest to me. I realized I needed to make the decision myself. It's my life after all! If I had consulted my family they would have likely tried to get me to stay in my job, and since I'm highly susceptible to their approval, I would have listened.

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Jan 5, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

““When her tears subsided, she looked at me with fierce determination. “I mean it. Promise this dying woman that you will always be true to yourself, that you will be brave enough to live the way you want to, regardless of what other people say.”

If you still want to learn how to code, hit me up, and Let’s chat

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Jan 5, 2023Liked by Michelle Elisabeth Varghese

Excellent, Michelle! I really like this final version :)

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I’m so happy to hear it resonated Marshall! Thank you for sharing your own personal experience. I relate to it. My parents were great role models in a lot of ways and I also realize now that they’re also human and limited by their own perspectives!

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