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MM is over 10 years old now, which would make some members 30. Do you ever think about your age and how you haven't achieved what you wanted or expected to. Did you ever plan about the future, and is your life actually going to plan?

 

I tend to find a lot of people are unsatisfied in one way or another. Does anyone feel that their life is too repetitive and dull and can't seem to find a way out.

 

Or you actually happy with how things went or are going.

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What i'm about to say will sound really clichéd but Allah subhana taala plans things so so perfectly. Anytime where i've felt things aren't going 'my way' its only been a matter of days/few weeks when things pan out and it becomes clear and then you realise that alhamdulilah Allah subhana taala always has your back and it alwaysalwaysalways works out.

 

I'd say my life is repetitive but I definitely prefer it this way, i like having a routine. I wouldn't say my life is dull because there are lots of happy/exciting things happening which are enjoyable, balanced with the responsibilities in life that ground you.

 

I think people have to stop being so doom and gloom and actually give themselves a chance and try to learn to trust Allah taala wholeheartedly and not as a last resort.

 

Alhamdulilah i never feel disatisfied with life/where I am, the only thing that frustrates me is that i always feel I won't be able to do enough with my life because of things beyond my control. I always worry my life won't be able to make the impact that I want to make and i find it difficult to make peace with 'theres only so much you can do' - its a bit vague, but my 'disatisfaction' comes from my limitations as one person wanting to change things that are beyond my control. I desperately want for kids around the world to be able to live without suffering from malnutrition, violence/oppression and i know that no matter how hard I try its never going to change the whole world and for me anything less than that is not enough. I know I probably sound about 5, but its how I feel and there's always a sadness in my heart because of it.

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I joined MM when I was 17. I was supposed to be married at 22. 2 kids by 25.

I'm 25 now. None of those thing have happened. But I'm not disappointed and I don't feel like a failure. I'm happy where I am in terms of marriage and kids. No one's life is ideal.

I was also supposed to have a masters degree by now but that won't be happening for several years if at all.

I'm just chugging along doing my thing and it seems to be going okay. I don't know if that sounds sad lol but I don't have any grand expectations from life.

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I drank tea in the evening today (which I rarely do) so I could be awake longer and get some work done. The tea ended up making me fall asleep for longer than I've ever taken a nap in recent times. I learned not to trust Mirzapuri tea. #whenindoubtalwayslipton So yeah, today was a fail.

 

Well, in seriousness, I don't feel down about things as long as my personal relationships are going well. This is what brings me overall satisfaction/fulfillment in life. Everything else, such as work and education are secondary. Obviously there are always going to be people who try to patronize you for not accomplishing the other societal expectations to their liking but at the end of the day I run on my own schedule, not someone else's.

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lol well as of being in my early 20's I would like to:

 

get a big job in finance and have a nice salary

work on cool problems

become a millionaire

travel a bit and learn french arabic italian spanish and maybe some others

 

funny thing is that I wanted none of these things this time last year apart from the last one. I was just content getting a research job that paid ok, so it's really weird how things change.

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I joined MM when I was 17. I was supposed to be married at 22. 2 kids by 25.

I'm 25 now. None of those thing have happened. But I'm not disappointed and I don't feel like a failure. I'm happy where I am in terms of marriage and kids. No one's life is ideal.

I was also supposed to have a masters degree by now but that won't be happening for several years if at all.

I'm just chugging along doing my thing and it seems to be going okay. I don't know if that sounds sad lol but I don't have any grand expectations from life.

 

gurl kids by 22 I thought you was a career woman

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I set goals on an event-by-event basis. I have a general direction, impulsively apply to something I think might get me a step closer, and then go where that takes me. My life is not repetitive or dull, alhamdulilah (It's in many ways the opposite), but that doesn't mean I'm content/satisfied with it.

 

More important than these superficial "plans," however, is your deeper state/direction. If you wanted to "become more religious," if you wanted to build more meaningful relationships, if you wanted to beat a bad habit, if you wanted to break a phobia- have you done that? I don't actually expect people to answer, but these are more important to reflect on. I doubt becoming a millionaire will make you more or less satisfied, 'superman'. Be careful of kryptonite.

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lol well as of being in my early 20's I would like to:

 

get a big job in finance and have a nice salary

work on cool problems

become a millionaire

travel a bit and learn french arabic italian spanish and maybe some others

 

funny thing is that I wanted none of these things this time last year apart from the last one. I was just content getting a research job that paid ok, so it's really weird how things change.

Your goal are similar to mine, except the path I'm taking there is different (I've basically taken a huge detour).

 

Just before graduation I was offered my dream job: a position in a top tier private equity firm in a frontier office. I actually turned it down because I was trying to get my own business launched and going, but things in that went badly after my business partner's father passed away and he had to go work in his family business. Kind of sucked but I learned a lot. This was about a year and a half ago.

 

I still want to do private equity, and to one day run my own business, but it seems I was taking things too fast and Allah had different plans for me. Do I regret not taking a job that paid 6 figures where I get to pick out companies in growing economies and watch them blossom? Sometimes I do of course. But at the same time I have interesting opportunities now and I've spent the past year working with refugees, reading, volunteering and spending time with my family, whilst carefully planning my next career move. These things probably would've been impossible, seeing as working at a junior level in a private equity firm like that can have you working for 100 hours a week and the fact the position was in South Africa (the biggest frontier market now is Africa and Cape Town is to Africa what London is to Europe), which is so far away from my family.

 

Now I'm looking at other paths to private equity that'll let me actually achieve other life goals other than just making a lot of money. If I started working in finance from now I wouldn't be able to get married and let alone have kids until I am like 28 or 30, and I really want kids. A less demanding job and an MBA will give me a good 6 years to start a family and I'll start at a more senior position too in finance post-MBA, that way at least I'll have a stable work-life balance and not burnout and destroy my relationships, which is exactly what some of my friends are going through.

 

Also this may come as a huge surprise to many, but when I first joined MM I described myself as a socialist. It's amazing what education and actually reading some economics can do LOL.

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I set goals on an event-by-event basis. I have a general direction, impulsively apply to something I think might get me a step closer, and then go where that takes me. My life is not repetitive or dull, alhamdulilah (It's in many ways the opposite), but that doesn't mean I'm content/satisfied with it.

 

More important than these superficial "plans," however, is your deeper state/direction. If you wanted to "become more religious," if you wanted to build more meaningful relationships, if you wanted to beat a bad habit, if you wanted to break a phobia- have you done that? I don't actually expect people to answer, but these are more important to reflect on. I doubt becoming a millionaire will make you more or less satisfied, 'superman'. Be careful of kryptonite.

 

Well I don't think wanting to become a millionaire is superficial. I'm not after an extravagant lifestyle but I am after financial security and not having to stress. I was planning to accumulate some wealth, perhaps invest in some assets, and then after that perhaps start on a PhD. If I do a PhD now I won't have time to enjoy life or have any financial security. I am hoping that if I can be wealthy well within my 30s I won't have to work that hard for the rest of my life.

 

What I'm trying to say is that I want to accumulate wealth to gain some kind of freedom. Looking at the stereotypical middleclass scenario you see a lot of financial stress for working 40 hours a week, where people often try to live above their means (ie buy nice cars). I'd be content with making a lot of money and living in an okay house with an okay car. Because at the end of the day I know that if I lose my job it's nothing to worry about... Basically I can choose to work, and this allows me to pursue something I would enjoy later on.

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A lot of things happened in my life. But I'm happy now. What SW said about Allah having His own plan is 10000000% true. I am actually incredibly grateful today that I had this trajectory between 2012 and now.

 

-Circa 2012-

 

- So... after coming back from Jerusalem, I learned that Peterborough was becoming toxic, thanks to central and local government creating a situation where the poorest were being told to **** off into the ground and bury themselves alive (and being told to blame European migrants for their troubles instead), and where the MP continued to avoid paying council taxes for his house, as well as scrounging off the state using taxpayer money. But in all seriousness, Peterborough's job prospects are pretty rubbish if you're a degree graduate, and didn't want to work in teaching (terrible sector thanks to being underfunded and oversubscribed), financial sectors (middle management fuddy duddy job titles that amount to nothing in real terms), or factory work. I picked the latter, working in a distribution centre for Amazon, where agencies had not bothered to define our terms and conditions (I later learned from my father was unionising was).

 

- The early morning job was supposed to be five days a week. Instead, Amazon with their Americanised we-won't-pay-taxes-to-this-country-oh-no-we-won't attitude added something called "compulsory overtime". And of course, if you didn't like it, you could buzz off, because clearly most of us workers needed the money. I was fine with it, cycling at 6am in the morning (the only time Peterborough looked genuinely beautiful) to get to work for 7am, and finishing at around 4pm. My dad told me that good old honest factory work helps a lot with self-reflection, and to allow for planning in the future. It was good work. I remember burning my hand with the hot glue needed to do up some of your Amazon parcels. I still have the scar from cutting myself with the box-cutter (I later learned this was because I had some form of dyspraxia, where my hand-eye coordination needed some work) on my right hand.

 

- I decided to use the money I earned from the 7 week job (I think it was about 2 grand) to move back to London. This was one of the most heartbreaking decisions I made in my family's perspective, but it was better that I left, to be honest. I secured a part time job teaching Year 7s in a private Muslim boys' school, and tuition in a lovely independent place in Brixton. Both were supposed to fuel some sort of misguided ambitions to be a teacher, where I could train while being on the job. Little did I know the adventure that took place afterwards, and how much it would negatively effect my health, mentally and physically.

 

- I hadn't realised just how far Maryland was compared to Brixton. So... I still remember how I lugged two massive suitcases onto a bus at Kings Cross, and then took a bus (or was it two?) to Dalston, where my friend put me up for a week. I was going to use the time to pay rent to him (which he kept on refusing), while I found a place to live. In the meantime, I had started teaching English to Year 7s, and tutoring kids in Brixton, and sleeping on the floor at night (the floor is good for your back). It was fun. I was taking the Overground from Dalston to go to Stratford, and taking the bus from Hackney into Brixton in order to get to my respective workplaces. My employers were great. I was 21. It was a time where I felt a bit more fiercely independent.

 

- My friend tells me he has a family friend who needs his house in New Cross to be looked after. So, house-sitting. Free rent (which helped me build up money to save up for Year 1 of my MA that September), a cat, what else did I need? I took up the offer, to find that in reality, it was a building site on the outside. The Somali family were going to Abu Dhabi, that evil little island from the fake-country-built-by-brown-people-because-Arabs-can't-build-their-own-crap known as the Emirates (I'm half trolling, half joking, half serious. Don't get your underwear in a twist.), and were converting their sorta-huge house into a block of flats. Technically, I think I must've been squatting. There was only electricity coming from a generator in the basement, and the only light was a bedside light in the bedroom. I initially slept in the very cold ground floor, but the family provided me with fresh bedding, a bench-like bed thing, a baby oil radiator, and a cat to look after. I then moved one floor above to a dusty room with a double bed. The bathroom had no light, which made showering in the night quite interesting. The kitchen was being ripped apart, and the only thing working was the fridge, and a single hob. Every other room was caked with dust, the outside had all sorts of scaffolding work, and builders would work from 7am till 5pm every day. They never came to my room, and respected my privacy. Never once did they bother me. Oh, and the lead builder turned out to be one of my Brixton employer's father too. And the building was owned by my employer's business partner. That sorta made sense now.

 

- You have to remember, the idea of not paying rent for 6-7 months meant my outgoings were dramatically cheaper. So that's why I did this, knowing what it would do to my health. I had no friends in New Cross. I had to walk around the area to discover Lewisham Mosque, made friends at my workplaces, and also find the shopping centre, other surrounding areas, plus Goldsmiths College was around the corner too. MM was a lifeline back then, as I used their little Skype call thing we'd always do. That was fun times. How did I have internet? Well, my employer gave me his unlimited BT Openzone account, which meant I could use the internet for free provided I managed to get a good connection to the WiFi in the street (BT Openzone hubs are usually found in phone boxes). When I wanted to download a show on iPlayer, I'd go outside, take my laptop, put it on the scaffolding, and sit in the steps of the house while the 700kb per second download progressed. :) I'd then come back, sit on the floor to eat my food, and bathe in the warmth of my heater, and sleep in the very dusty room, with socks on, a jumper, and playing on my Nintendo DS which I bought for £10. I'd ring my parents every two days, telling them everything is all good, and that I'm living fine. One time, I was scared because my older brother said he was in the area. I couldn't have him knowing where I was living, so I pretended to say I was at work. No way he was gonna see me like this, haha.

 

- Living in New Cross meant I could get to Brixton a lot easier now, using two buses, one that went from New Cross to Camberwell, and one from Camberwell to Brixton. It usually took an hour. Getting to Stratford was easier still, as all I needed to do was walked to New Cross Gate overground station to Canada Water, and then the Jubilee line. And then walk. In reality, I initially used to take various routes and learn London's sprawling transport system, but it was a weird sort of fun, avoiding Zone 1. I was budgeting everything on a Word document, which showed what I had coming in (very little, £10 an hour from the school, and £8 an hour from the tuition centre. Yes, these were above living wage at the time, but in reality I wouldn't have survived in London if I was paying rent between those sixth/seven months in the building site). Also, what was coming out, and what I could've been doing to spend less. I stopped buying new clothes. Stopped buying new underwear. Stopped buying food, apart from Pot Noodle and the odd £1 chicken and chips per week. I mean, I didn't even have a working or safe kitchen, so it would've been pointless to buy fresh food at the time.

 

- As I continued to teach, I found myself being drained by the prospect of helping build a relatively new Muslim boys school as well as designing workbooks for the tuition centre in Brixton. I loved working at the latter though, because it gave me a sense of security and normalness that the building site at home didn't provide. Unfortunately, I had to start demanding my pay from the school, as for half of the duration of my employment at the school (they terminated my contract at the end of the school term), they hadn't paid me, nor any staff member, thanks to a lack of fees being paid (which wasn't my problem, tbh). Had I started paying rent, I doubt I would've been able to survive. So, when I got a relatively decent amount of sub ££.7k in around June 2013, I was happy. For the first time, my bank account peaked at around £4k in my pocket. During that time, I also learned to use my degree skills to begin a copyediting and proofreading freelance business, and in between each employer, my spare time was dedicated to editing various dissertations, letters, MA and PhD theses, and all sorts of stuff. During that time, I earned around £800 in the year, which made a large difference to my life, and gave me lots of work later because clients would be happy to send my business card everywhere.

 

- But then came the builders, who were progressing well with the building site, and suddenly, I came into the house one day to find that the main corridor had no room. White-rose can attest to this, lol, as I once Skyped her the whole house. Ramadhan was coming up. I didn't know what to do - I was being told three weeks in advance that I must vacate now as it's getting genuinely unsafe for me to look after the house. Oh, and btw, lol, my Somali family friends who owned the house forgot I was still there, as they once came to visit to find me sleeping in there. Woops. They were lovely though, and then dropped the news of three weeks notice. :P

 

- What would I do? Find out more in the next instalment.

 

I realise I'm writing a lot, but the OP sorta triggered a desire to really, really let out everything that's happened - and I'm gonna continue till the present day. I think it'd be fun to chronicle my experiences either in this thread or my own. Feel free to moderate as you wish. It's ironic that a creative writing student who suffered from writers' block for about four years is finally writing this much now, lol.

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Well I don't think wanting to become a millionaire is superficial. I'm not after an extravagant lifestyle but I am after financial security and not having to stress. I was planning to accumulate some wealth, perhaps invest in some assets, and then after that perhaps start on a PhD. If I do a PhD now I won't have time to enjoy life or have any financial security. I am hoping that if I can be wealthy well within my 30s I won't have to work that hard for the rest of my life.

 

What I'm trying to say is that I want to accumulate wealth to gain some kind of freedom. Looking at the stereotypical middleclass scenario you see a lot of financial stress for working 40 hours a week, where people often try to live above their means (ie buy nice cars). I'd be content with making a lot of money and living in an okay house with an okay car. Because at the end of the day I know that if I lose my job it's nothing to worry about... Basically I can choose to work, and this allows me to pursue something I would enjoy later on.

That's fair, I think financial stability is important. Just noting our goals & plans should be multi-layered & diverse.

 

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