Are you a snow lover between the age of 23 and 25, living your best life working season after season? Are you starting to feel the pressures of being labelled a ski bum? Answering questions like ‘when are you going to get a real job?’ a lot?
If you are nodding your head, this post is for you!
Whether you’re a snow-loving or a sun-seeking adventurer, the concept here is the same. You love to travel and you are not ready to stop just yet, or possibly ever! And yet, society is telling you to ‘grow up and get a real job’. Well, I’ve got something to say about that.
First of all, what even is growing up these days?
Is growing up really the motions of buying a house, settling down, and finding a job that you can tolerate, but most likely won’t find joy in?
Second of all, why is it that society pushes us to live this cookie cutter life?
Why are we questioned, judged or shunned if we want anything remotely different from this?
Now before I get into the rest of my rant, I want to explicitly point out that I have absolutely no issues with people who do want this kind of life. If you honestly love your house, car, job, life etc. and it’s all you ever dreamed of, then good on you!
Just because it may not necessarily be my cup of tea, doesn’t mean I don’t love it for you.
Where is this coming from?
Well, it’s 2020. The world has been essentially shut down thanks to Covid. Which has left most of us a lot of time to reflect on our lives and the decisions we’ve made to get to where we currently are in life.
And honestly, I’m a little bummed out. I’ve realised that I’m not where I want to be in my life. In fact, I’m quite a ways off.
The epiphany? If I didn’t follow the steps society expected me to take, I may be living a completely different life right now.
The good news is, I’m only 30 and have plenty of time to change that. The bad news is, Covid is really putting a roadblock on some of the steps I need to take to fix it.
Don’t get me wrong, my life is not ‘bad’ by any means. I have a husband who shares my hopes and dreams, a loving family, a roof over my head, and a job that helps me pay the bills.
But am I excited to get out of bed in the morning? Not really.
The Reason I’m Not living the ski bum life… yet
I had worked a few seasons already when my now husband and I headed to Big White Canada, for our last hurrah. We only ever intended on doing one season, but we loved it so much, that we went back for a second.
Side note – Don’t read this post about our working holiday in Canada if you don’t want to be convinced it’s the perfect next move for you!
In April of 2017, we packed up after our second season. We were stoked to have had an amazing few years in Canada, but also sad that we had to head home and start being real grown-ups. It was a term we threw around often.
Truth be told, a part of me did want to go home and settle down.
I wanted to find a career that I loved, buy a house, get married, and eventually start a family. Of course, we’d still travel! But we just wouldn’t be able to live a holiday lifestyle for 6-months of the year.
But the other part of me could not shake the tight feeling in my chest. The feeling of anxiousness that I didn’t want to grow up. Or the thoughts of, is this really what I want?
I must point out that at no point did anyone of influence in my family tell me to get my shit together. They have always been super supportive!
The pressure that I’m talking about, was all from me. Because I care too much about what other people think of me, and I knew most people wouldn’t understand how we felt.
Spoiler alert – I am still searching for a career that I love. I think I am close, but that’s a story for another day…
Anyway, Eventually, I Gave In…
We came home and started our grown-up life. I started a career in travel as a travel agent, and I really did enjoy it for the first 12-months… and then, boredom started to set in.
I couldn’t help but think that surely this isn’t all life is cracked up to be?
As you get older, you start to realise that you don’t actually care what people think (and you shouldn’t). It’s your darn life, and you should live it however you like.
Which is why you shouldn’t fight the urge to be a ski bum, if that’s how you want to live your life.
So, How Does Being a Ski Bum Come Into It?
It’s simple really.
If you had have stayed living the ski bum, sun-seeking, adventure having, *enter ideal lifestyle* life you were enjoying, you could potentially be working your dream job, in your dream location by now.
You see, seasons are not always about partying and being a lazy liftie.
There are real professionals behind successful resorts. I’m talking human resources, marketing, head of departments, mountain operations, ski patrol, instructors… need I go on?
Sure, you may start as a barista, or ski rental technician, and you may love these jobs and want to stay in them forever.
But, if you want more, and have passion, drive, and enthusiasm, there are so many opportunities to expand and grow professionally within a ski resort.
In any case, I believe the word career should be wiped from the dictionary. It carries so much more pressure than the words job or work.
At the end of the day, I honestly believe that if you are working a job that you love, you are happy, have financial security, shelter, food, and a family that loves you; you have everything you need.
Will You Have Regrets Living the ‘Ski Bum’ Life?
If you can create a life that you genuinely love – not likely.
And anyway, if you do decide it’s not for you, it’s never too late to change the course of your life.
My Point Is…
Don’t wait until you’re 30 to realise that you should’ve stuck to your guns, thought harder about what you wanted in life, and followed your instinct.
The instinct that is deep down nudging you with feelings of a tight chest, nervousness or a sinking stomach.
If you want to work a high-pressured career, tick off life’s milestones, and live in the perfect house; you should!
If you want to work as a barista or waitress for the rest of you life; great!
But if you want to live in the mountains, own 5 dogs, and build an online business that you can take anywhere that pays the bills and makes you happy; you should do that too!
Does any of this sound familiar? I’d love to hear from you if you’ve ever felt the same or how your life has changed for the better by listening to your gut!