How to Change Your Career to a Career You Love

Career Expert Bayt

Career Expert Bayt

Posted originally on Bayt’s blog.

I hated composition assignments at school. I was never good in languages classes like I was good in math or science. When I wrote something down, I used to make sure no one reads it, and when that happened, I would die of embarrassment.

I felt more comfortable with numbers than letters. Numbers didn’t entail self-expression; they didn’t push me out of my comfort zone as a shy kid. I also had an interest in arts. Drawing was my subtle way of self-expression at that age.

Things changed with time.

I studied Computer Science at college as a natural consequence of my scientific interest and the popularity of the field at the time. It wasn’t my first choice though; I wanted to study architecture thinking it would satisfy my interest in both numbers and arts. If you live in Jordan then you must know the Jordanian system of universities’ admission. Despite getting 92.8% in the Tawjihi (Jordanian High School degree), I didn’t meet the requirement of studying Architecture that year (1996), which was set at 95% at the University of Jordan. So Computer Science emerged as a second option, and I found myself searching for an artistic side to that discipline. I found it in the colorful pages of the web. And so, trying to avoid sticking to becoming a programmer, I worked hard to become a web designer, but I also fell short because I had no Graphic Design background. I ended up being a User Interface (UI) developer for many years after that.

I enjoyed the first few years of working as a UI developer. The combination of HTML code snippets with Photoshop slicing and Style Sheets coloring met my interests in logic and design. But it didn’t satisfy me completely. Maybe it had to do with the nature of the business of the company I worked for at the time. There was no emphasize on creativity, the design had a secondary priority, and thus I ended up feeling like I was doing a soulless job. A couple of years down the road, I was desperate to break off and look for something else!

Working online helped me explore my writing and communication skills. As part of my job as a UI developer, I had the internet open to discussing and debating issues that mattered. I used Yahoo Message Boards at the time to debate a TV series I used to love (not telling you which one it was). I became more comfortable in expressing myself with words. I felt that my background in Computer Science helped me in shaping logical arguments. And soon, letters started to appeal to me, and language started to become dearer to my heart than numbers.

I launched my own blog in 2006 and started expressing myself like I never had before. I had so much to say and didn’t shy from that. Language wasn’t my strongest asset, but I made up for that by being genuine and original in the ideas I wanted to communicate. With time, my writing skills improved and so did my way of thinking. Suddenly, it became apparent to me that language is larger than numbers, and that thinking is bigger than logic. Playing with letters became much more fulfilling than playing with numbers, and coming up with an original idea started to make me happier than solving a mathematical equation.

After that, I decided to switch from Web Design into Social Media where I could do more writing and communication than coding and coloring. I was also able to collect my ideas and write my first novel “Aroos Amman” (The Bride of Amman) which witnessed success since it saw the light in 2012. The passion of connecting with people grew within me and I found myself longing to write more and more and shape myself into a fiction writer. I got a scholarship and went back to school. I did an MA in Creative Writing and Critical Thinking at the University of Sussex in the UK and graduated with a Merit.

During the book signing of Aroos Amman

During the book signing of Aroos Amman

(During the signing of my first book, Aroos Amman)

Today, I am waiting for the release of my second book “Janna Ala Al Ard” (Heaven on Earth), a science fiction story that builds on all the things I love: science, philosophy, exploration, language, logic, design, communication, achievement, and creativity.

I guess it came with age. At 36 years old now, I find myself passionate about many different things in life. I have more appetite for exploration and a much bigger arsenal of skills to portray things the way I want them to be.

My tumultuous career taught me that we may not always get exactly what we want, but, with time we learn to broaden our horizon and pick up whatever falls in our paths. We just have to keep on marching.

Micro blogging – Shoes issue and other stuff

I have some statements in my mind that can go into a post of micro blogging the way Hareega has been doing recently

* While I loved the act of Muntadhar Al Zaidi because it reflected the feelings of many people around the world, I still think that it is wrong from a professional journalism ethics point of view.

* 7 to 15 years in jail is PURE injustice for a man throwing a shoe on someone else no matter how important that someone else can be. In Jordan, people get 3 years in jail for an honor crime where a woman got KILLED not thrown by a shoe! Who said the world is fair anyway?!

* It is ironic that most Bush-shoe-hitters in the sock and awe flash game are from the United States of America. Some American were offended by the act, but a lot of other American wanted to hit him themselves! It is understandable, we do feel like hitting some of our lousy leaders with more than shoes, no?

* It surprised me the amount of hits I got after a Norwegian newspaper linked to my caricature last week. The daily visitors for this blog jumped from an average of 200 visitors daily to around 1000 visitor! That explains the amount of anonymous comments of that post from new visitors of this blog. Now it is back to normak.

* Pessimistic people pisses me. There is someone in the blogsphere who comment under the nickname El Mashkalgy. From his name, you would realize that he likes to cause trouble. He refuses to see any positive achievement in this country. We exchange some comments at the Danish Ambassadors blog recently. He said why is Jordan lacking behind many countries? I answered him that the question can also be why is Jordan proceeding many other countries as well? A glass can be discribed half full, no?

* I got banned from blogging at work. I don’t think that it had affected my performance but they started monitory our internet usage because the internet in Jordan sucks and they are trying everything to keep it at best rate for work usage only. It really pissed me on. This blog has been my survival window in a dull software development career. I have been looking for switching careers sometimes now. How hard can it be moving from web design/UI development into a social development, human rights or journalism field? Any idea guys of the best way to have this transition?