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“There’s fog on my windshield! I can’t see!”

August 18, 2010

Those were the exact words I was thinking when I was driving to the mosque at 5:20 am this morning.

See, due to thieves in the neighborhood, one day I woke up and found that the center console of my car was missing. You know that thing that has your radio, climate control, and all that good stuff that usually make commutes less boring and more comfortable? Yeah, well they were replaced with wires protruding from my car, as if to say, “ha! Now you get electrocuted if you wanna be comfy!”

And since stealing the radio was so amateurly done (say the mechanics), it would cost $1000 to replace. Mainly because you have to pay what I like to call a “dealership tax.” You know, that 250% rate you pay when you go to a car dealership. Yeah…

Anyway, defogger/defroster? Not in my car.

So there I was, driving down my street before I realized that if there were a pedestrian or biker in front of me, things would end badly. So I stopped at the curb (without puncturing my tire this time) and wiped my windshield off and learned that the condensation was outside. So I clicked on the wipers and I could see! For a second, till the condensation came back. So I clicked them on full blast, used only during hurricanes and typhoons and such, and I could see!

I continued my drive.

What’s the point of this story? Many of you are probably scowling at me saying, “its dangerous to drive when you can’t see!!” And I agree. Indeed it is dangerous. Driving without knowing where you’re going can kill people.

However… let’s not stop there. It’s also dangerous to live life with no clear sight of where you’re headed. How many people merely go with the flow, attend college merely because everyone else is doing it, major in some random field because they didn’t know what they wanted to do when they grew up?

Now, there’s nothing wrong with college, except the debt associated with it. Nor is there anything wrong with majoring in a non-engineering field (so get off your high-chair engineers). But I am appalled at how many of my ex-classmates wanted to major in chemical engineering because of either the high pay, their parents made them, or just because it sounded cool.

And then when they found out that they couldn’t pass the intro courses, they changed majors.

Okay, disclaimer: I am not in any way shape or form saying or implying you shouldn’t major in chem engineering, or that you shouldn’t change majors. I’m merely pointing out the fact that… perhaps if some of those students looked into chemical engineering and professions related to chemical engineering, and actually discussed with their parents, “mom, dad, I don’t want to be a chemical engineer. None of their jobs appeal to me and I don’t want to lose my social life in college to get a job I don’t want!” If the students discussed that with their parents, I’m sure they’d help him or her make a better decision on his or her major. If the parents condemn the student for not wanting to be what they want the student to be… well, I’ll say nothing, but my readers should know me well enough to know what my response to these parents would be.

So what’s the point? These students merely lacked sight. They were driving their lives with their windshields fogged up. That’s prone for a disaster. A few years in the future, they’ll look at their career and realize they hate it… and they can’t do anything about it.

“Okay,” some of you may be telling yourself. “I already went through college and learned that the hard way. I know everything!”

Sorry, you don’t. I don’t either. But ask yourself this. “Is there something that I really want to do that I cannot do because of circumstances that I can control?”

Most of you guys probably want to go on vacation. Who doesn’t? But you can’t go because you can’t take the time off of work, or you don’t have enough money, or something like that. And some of you may think that you can’t control things like that. That’s exactly where you’re wrong. Turn your wipers on. Set it past typhoon mode. Past hurricane mode. Put it on the freaking FLOOD mode, because you’re about to learn that you can indeed get what you want, if you do what it takes to get there.

Look for the purpose in your life. Was your purpose to work a 60-80 hours a week until you turn 72 to retire? 72, by the way, is the new 65. And for people in my generation, 100 is probably going to be the new 72, assuming you can even get a job. I don’t want to retire when I’m about to retire! Who knows, maybe the day I leave my job on retirement is going to be the day before I die. That’s not secure!

So I’m not going to bank the rest of my life on this retirement plan. Work my life away and miss witnessing my children growing up. I’m going to look beyond what corporate America is trying to teach us.

Look, there’s nothing wrong with getting a job. I want to work for Petronas and then hopefully work under the state as a prosecuting attorney and run for the DA. But notice the wording–I WANT to. Sure, working as an engineer may make me tons of bucks! Being an attorney may make me tons of megabucks! To use a seventies term. However, once my job loses its novelty, what happens? I get stuck working for the rest of my life in a job I no longer enjoy! I don’t want to do something I don’t enjoy for the rest of my life!

Get out there. Look for someone who you know is debt free, and possibly even job free. If you don’t know anyone like that, find someone! And find out what he did to get there! I can assure you, he’s probably willing to share you his secrets for free. And associate yourself with that person. Pick his brain. Ask him questions. Be a skeptic. Play devil’s advocate. Learn everything that he did and learn his principles. And try to be like him. Don’t do exactly what he did. Rather, learn his principles. Learn from his mindset. And use this information to pave your own path to success.

The law of association states that you attract individuals who are like-minded to you. So congrats all you readers: you’re going to succeed!

So, my advice to everyone: don’t let your vision cloud up. Don’t take for granted your gift of sight. Turn those wipers on. The man who can read but doesn’t is no better than the man who can’t read.

You’re all on the right track by reading my blog. Don’t stop here though. I don’t know everything. Look at what it is you want out of life. What do you want to do when you grow up? Where do you wanna live? Define your future. Learn from someone who has traversed that minefield. A google search works wonders for this. And do what it takes to get you there.

I’ll see you all at the top. Take care.

Rasheed

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