in the pursuit to simplify my life

January 25, 2011

since around 2007, I have been in the mode of searching a better way to run my life.

as a practicioner of process improvement (including LEAN principle), I had been fully aware that I spent more than 20% of my time daily stuck in traffic on the way to and from office

notes: I live in BSD city, work in the heart of Jakarta business center. It is only about 30 kms, but in average it takes 2 hours one way trip driving

From a LEAN principle, this daily transportation time is obviously a non-value added activity (NVA); but at that time I considered it as necessary NVA especially because I really like the job (and the company) and I think I have a good chance to progress well.

but i keep searching a better solution

fortunately, during my journey, an old colleague offered me to join her consulting firm as an associate. The job gives me at least 2 advantages: it is something which will keep me excited everyday, and it allow me to work mostly (>60%) from home.

but the fact in life, deciding on a job was not easy (actually will never be easy for everybody)

it has some risks, and it took me 2 YEARS (!) to think, prepare and decide. To take the new route, it means I am leaving a great job in a great company and my GREAT & FUN team! There is an issue of sustainability and losing the opportunity of taking big roles in big  corporation (+ the perks).

So, how I made the decision?

1. I started to reflect and questioning my goal in life; what is the most important thing for me and my family

2. Started to make some tracking of the time I spent versus my ideal goal. Is it aligned? If my first priority is family, do I spent the biggest portion of my time for my family? Do I follow my passion in life?

A simple pareto diagram like this helped me to visually see the actual time spent (the example on the link is not exactly the one I used for deciding my career)

3. Made the decision and plan well to have a smooth take-off

For me, simple does not mean easy.

The path is simple yet not easy. But, it is less complicated because basically I am taking the simplest and clearest way between what I am doing and what my family want to achieve in life.

I just started in 2011, but I am glad I am taking this decision and certainly will work smartly + hard to make it successful. Wish me luck, friends!

end notes:

For any of you, this is not about to be an entrepreneur nor a consultant nor an artist. It is about finding the simplest way between your dream, your passion, and how you actually spend your day