Idiot or Inspiration

A good friend of mine recently posted on Facebook that my career change was an inspiration, it made me wonder how giving up a well respected job with great pay could be considered as inspirational, and too whom? I have been planning my move to the land for almost three years now and at no point did I ever think that it would be seen as an inspiration or that anyone would even think it was a good idea. If anything I have been embarrassed when I have ventured to tell people that I intended to become a pig farmer, often making a joke of it in meetings. An inspiration was, and is, the last thing I think that I am.

If you have ever dramatically changed your career you will know a little of what a massive shock it is for me to go from managing an office to becoming a free range pig farmer. It is even more of an shock for everyone around me, the term ‘pig farmer’ alone strikes fear into the hearts of any parent, parent in law or family member and whilst everyone is very polite I cant help but think that they all believe I’m having a mid-life crisis.

Well the good news is that I am not having a mid life crisis and that I am not being irresponsible. I am honoured that I might be an inspiration but in reality I am just following the path less travelled. I now feel embarrassment when I tell trades people and the staff at Farmlands that I used to be a manager of a consumer electronics company, I feel like a ‘fraud’ farmer. But as much as I worry about wether or not I can truly become a farmer I am also really excited about the challenge, about the food we will create and the life we will have.

This is a much better view than HK harbour.

This is a much better view than HK harbour.

So to all those worriers and supporters alike let me say this. If your life is not exciting you, if you are not getting challenged and don’t feel passionate about your work, if money is not the reason why you are happy… try something else. Better still, get the family on a plane and get over to Woody’s @ North Manakau and come and help me to build a sustainable farm that we can all enjoy. You might find you like it and you want to buy your own!

7 thoughts on “Idiot or Inspiration

  1. Daniel…….
    I can guarantee that most will be reading this with awe and envy. A life changing move is something people only dream about but never put It to reality. You are doing it…you have jumped over the edge and instead of fearing the freefall – you are soaring. Ok the shear amount of pig poo may eventually find you grounded and those long farm days have you longing for a nice air condiioned office but you are the man, the boss, the skivvy, the tea boy, the CEO all rolled into one and no-one can tell you what, how, why or who (oh except for the `Mrs` of course ).
    I indeed dream of such a life changing plan and I will enjoy following the trials, tribulations and oinks of yours.
    Kirsty. X

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  2. Easy question. The answer goes like this:-
    Most of us are in well respected and varying levels of ‘well paid’ jobs. But few of us are happy having to give so much of our lives to other people with no end in sight. Anyone who has the gumption to get up and try to find happiness in an alternative career is to be applauded.
    I like the phrase above about following the oinks. When do we get the first oink?!

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  3. My father did a similar thing about 20 years ago, finished up as a senior manager in a very large Insurance company and started running his own about a 100acre hobby farm just up the road from you. sometimes lifestyle is more important than money.

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