Whether I liked it or not, I have had a lot of time on my hands.
With current lockdowns and social distancing measures, I spent A LOT more time at home, with myself and away from the usual hustle and bustle of life that we enjoyed pre-covid.
It made me pause and take measure of my life, as it it stood right now.
I have a respectable and stable job in the financial industry and make decent money and yet I was not feeling fulfilled. In fact, I started feeling stuck.
I felt I was not being pushed creatively and was not taking enough risks in my life.
There are many great aspects of having a stable life. Especially given the current COVID-19 environment. However, the problem with stability is that you are always in your comfort zone.
You build a nice, cozy life around that stability and it becomes difficult to pull yourself out of it to try different things. There are bills to pay, commitments to keep and routines to maintain. Change is always uncomfortable.
That led to me asking myself about why I wanted the change, what was the change I wanted and how can I manage it in my current routine. I broke these questions down in the following way.
- I did not feel like I was being challenged creatively at work enough.
- I wanted to learn a new skill, it had been some time since I had added to my skillset.
- I wanted to change my career in a different direction.
- Having a career in finance, I had experience and an education with numbers. I wanted to find something that utilized my current skillset and creativity.
- Something that was relevant in the current environment of technology and analytics.
- I wanted to do something that can be applied across industries, and can be skillset that can be utilized also if I wanted to start my own business.
- Whatever I chose, had to give me enough flexibility to do off work hours and I can organize around my normal routine (for e.g. working out, going for hikes, cooking, etc.)
- But it also had to give me deadlines, so it allowed me to stay focused and committed to completing.
- There had to be practical experience involved in whatever I selected, so that I could apply whatever I was learning. Practical application is the best way to learn in my experience!
After Googling through many posts, threads and sub-threads- I finally found something that checked off all the things I had on my list.
The Udacity Digital Marketing Nanodegree! (DMND)
- The course work allowed me the flexibility to work around my day to day activities.
- There were (soft) deadlines involved, that allowed my to stay and on track with the work. They also allow you to set reminders by email and/or phone messages to remind you about these deadlines as well.
- The project work gives you practical experience, using the skills that you are currently learning about.
- Digital marketing is a field that combines both numerical analysis as well as the creativity of application.
The DMND program was the right fit for me, while at the same time taking me out of my comfort zone and allowing me to grow!