Thursday, June 11, 2015

Finding My Focus

My new super Macro lens takes great close up pictures that have a shallow "depth of field" (ie, the part of the picture that's in focus). That can be good for isolating the subject but you do have to decide what you want to focus on.

Do you focus on the details that are closest to you while making the "big picture" slightly out of focus? Or do you focus on the petals and leave the stuff closest to you blurry?

I was musing on this as it relates to photography while weeding the garden this week. Weeding is a great time for contemplating my navel thinking about my philosophy of life. The garden was very weedy so this topic expanded into finding the focus in my life.

When I was younger I always had plans for the future. After graduating high school I'll go to THIS college because I want to go to vet school. OK. maybe not vet school. Next I'll go to graduate school. OK. I need to take a few years between undergrad and graduate school. No problem. 

Toward the end of graduate school I quit making much in the way of future plans. Graduate school didn't quite work out as I had planned and while I did eventually plan my next career move it kind of stalled after that.

So lately I've been plan-less. 

And I feel "scattered." I  have a good job that I mostly enjoy. I don't have any major career plans because once I reach full professor (tenured) I don't intend to move into administration. We aren't moving any time soon (a first for me in a LONG time - this house is the second longest I've ever lived in one place in my whole life). No major life changes coming up that require plans. No major changes coming up (that I can predict).

So that leave my "personal" life. I've taken an art class, I've enrolled in a Spanish class, I've dabbled in this and that but not really found a focus (except gardening). This leaves me feeling like I'm not accomplishing anything.

It's not an accurate perception but it's there.

So I decided to sit down and list all of the categories of stuff I'm interested in and have claimed to be working on and make plans. One year, two year, five year and ten year goals.

Do I want to become proficient in Spanish or just learn enough to help while traveling (the latter, definitely)?

Do I want to spend more time and energy improving my photography? My writing skills? My drawing/art?

Do I want to work on finally refinishing inherited furniture that needs work? Will I ever replace the no longer functioning innards of the 1950s era radio with a modern system (an iPod doc, anyone?) or is it fine as an aesthetic piece?

It's time to find a focus. What will I do in "this" lifetime?

Thanks to Zack Weiner of Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal and BAHfest for this GREAT concept!

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