I’ve known about 5 or so people who have quit the service since I joined. I think its safe to say that they all left for various specific reasons, but the underlying theme is similar. They all feel/felt that they did not want to continue doing something they didn’t see anymore meaning in.
And I agree with them.
There are days when I feel I’d do the same, if money wasn’t an issue. But because we live in the “real” world, and money is an issue, I don’t really think about that a lot. Most of the time, especially during hectic periods, I am in “survival mode” – doing what one needs to survive. Skipping lunch here and there so that I don’t need to bring so much work home and can read before I sleep. Staying back on a Friday afternoon to get at least that Saturday morning off. Writing my head off on Sunday nights to calm my nerves before Monday begins again. Survival mode, at least in my version of it, means trying to make the best of the situation, and hoping to make at least some good come out of the chaos. And maybe because I’ve been blessed with relatively understanding bosses and colleagues, I’ve still managed to see meaning in most of the work we do.
The fear remains – what if the day comes when I too decide that there is no more meaning in what we do? After all, I still do have 3 more years to go. And after getting a glimpse of an alternative career, I do find myself wishing I need not return to the system.
But I guess I’ll have 1 year and 8 months more to think about that seriously.
For now, let me continue to live in the moment, learn and experience as much as I can. And when the time comes… Trust that everything will fall into place. For meaning.