I’ve had an epiphany. Truly. It’s eye opening.
First some background – my Myers Briggs type is INTJ. One specific part of this preference type is:-
“INTJs have a hunger for knowledge and strive to constantly increase their competence; …They tend to have a keen interest in self-improvement and are lifelong learners, always looking to add to their base of information and awareness.” (See here for more on this)
Now as you know I have been playing Eve Online lately. But increasingly I’ve found myself only logging on to update Erike’s training queue & then logging back out. That seemed enough – just knowing I’d set her to work, that I had a character who was learning even when I wasn’t logged on. Now I know it doesn’t really work this way- Erike Austrene is not really siting there for 4 days learning the ins and outs of energy management systems, but I liked the idea of it. Every single module in her skills list looked appealing to me- and I even found myself wanting to train her in the Leadership & Management modules- although I have no intention of running a corporation. I wanted her to gain knowledge & knowledge related to my own real life area of work seemed particularly tempting (yes I run a space retail corporation in real life – sunscreen is of course our biggest selling item on Mercury, followed by fire extinguishers).
Anyway my excitement increased tenfold when I stumbled across the in-game Certification planner & realised I could map out a plan of study for her & gain “qualifications”. This was amazing. She would be a Professor of Space in no time. It occurred to though me that without actually playing the game I was going to have a hard time having enough ISK to buy the training books – that was a problem. And it was then that I started really thinking about what I was doing- I was basically just supporting Erike through some virtual space school, with actually no burning desire to play the game itself. Oh dear.
By now I had joined & been accepted into Eve University. I started thinking about my motivations for that. (a)I liked the idea of being in an online university (b)I liked the lecture programme they offered (c)I liked the idea of progressing in knowledge in a structured framework. But again- it was the education & progression part of it all that was appealing- not the fact I’d be learning skills to play the game.
That’s when I realised what I was doing (takes awhile but I do get there in the end). I was trying to satisfy my own desire to study/learn by doing it in a virtual context that was ultimately rather unsatisfying since however expert Erike is in Energy Management I still don’t know the price of my electricity units with my supplier & undoubtedly leave too many lights on. And that led to the next question – why wasn’t I just devoting the same amount of time I spend doing this virtually to doing it in real life – and have something tangible to show for it at the end?
As I say- an epiphany. I love my career and want to develop in it. There are definitely additional qualifications/courses I can be doing to further hone my skills. My degree/post grad qualifications are not in a related field so for one thing additional vocational qualifications would be beneficial.
And so I have enrolled on an Accountancy qualification (ACCA) – starting with F4 Corporate & Business Law, intending to do the exam in December. It’s not directly relevant to my current post- which is a Policy one. But it will be an important addition to my CV for the future & my previous four years in operations have already given me a great deal of the required practical experience.
I’m very excited about this decision to invest time in my own development. But I’m not sure what this means about my online gaming.The blog will certainly continue but the posts in the Personal category might grow in number as opposed to the WoW & Eve ones. We’ll see how it goes. All I know is that I feel that my life needs to enter this new stage – I need to work on something that will give me something tangible at the end and take my career further. I don’t think I can do it all and so the gaming will need to take a step back. But now is the time to act. Since I’m basically just using my Eve character to study skills clearly something is amiss. If I was still playing WoW regularly undoubtedly I’d be stalking the class trainers begging them to teach me more and more spells (they’d end up putting an injunction out on me I’m sure).
So I’ve recognised it is me that needs more knowledge not Erike, I need to study not Seashell, I need to learn not Bravetank. And so I’m going to do it. For me the time is right to level up in the real world – & I’m really excited about it. But I will miss the flying