Friday, December 14, 2007

The Next Big Change

This year has been a time of many changes for me, some of which get blogged about in more detail than others. But this is one that's currently making the rounds of announcements: I'm going to be leaving my job at Google.

When: The timeline for this isn't rushed. Taking various factors into consideration, I'll probably be finishing up early- or mid-February. Exact date still TBD.

Why: The simple answer is just that it's time for a change. I still think Google is a great place to be, but it's a great place that I've been for nearly 4.5 years now. I could conceivably switch to a different sort of job here, but at this point I want more of a change even than that. I also just want to take a break for a few months before deciding what's next on the job front. (So no, I'm not just trying to be like my sister.)

What: For now I'm planning on leaving most of the time unstructured, but it's certainly not going to be all lazying around kinda time. Among the various things I'd like to do are....
  • Music. I'd especially like to work on singing, ear training, composing, and piano.
  • Art. I want to draw more, work on my wall, maybe think of other fun projects.
  • Writing. I don't know about doing another novel, but I'd kind of like to try my hand at some short stories. There's a continuing studies class next quarter on writing micro fiction, which might be fun to take.
  • Volunteering. Probably more stuff through Hands On Bay Area, or other groups I find.
  • Travel. I'm still in the planning stages for a volunteer trip. Might even consider the Prague vintage dance week if I'm still footloose come July.
  • Meditation. A conversation with Case today made me think a meditation retreat might be interesting to try.
  • Cooking. Okay, this one might be a stretch, but if weaning myself off Google food doesn't get me learning to cook, nothing will.
  • Outdoorsiness. Find some nice places to go hiking or camping or something.
  • Dancing. This is one thing I'm actually getting about the right amount of already, so I don't really need more of it, but hopefully I'll keep it up.
  • Reading. Again, I do kinda enough of this, but a bit more wouldn't hurt.
  • Redesign my blog. If I come up with a cool idea, it might be fun.
I tried to narrow that list down, really. Well, okay, not much.

Anyway, I don't know where this will all end up, but I'm sure it will be interesting. I've done it before, deliberately flinging myself into the jobless void like this, and it worked out quite well. So it'll all be good.

Reminder: I work at Google but speak for myself. I have no job offers, stock tips, or trade secrets to share with you. Go here for help with Blogger and here for help with Reader.

72 comments:

Adam Lasnik said...

I first felt sad to learn that you were leaving Google... but then remembered you're one of those folks who is thankfully not defined by his job, who will never be bored, who will always find ways to learn, connect, challenge and be challenged.

I look forward to hearing about your new adventures as they happen, especially since I can always use a bit of inspiration to re-immerse myself in the outside world ;-)

Lara said...

good luck with the change! i've been loving my free time, but i can't afford to take too much of it, so i'll probably be employed again soon. i look forward to reading about your progress in all those areas you wrote about. :)

andrea said...

Congratulations! I'm so happy for you :-) Best wishes for everything, especially having fun!

tali said...

Good luck and have fun! It sounds like you have a lot of exciting new projects and directions to be going in. :)

Lacey said...

Hey! What do you mean by "I'm not just trying to be like my sister." ?? Harrumph!

:P

I just told my coworkers yesterday, too - they were all very supportive and excited for me. We're going to do great things with our time off, you and I! :)

Christine Songco said...

congrats dude - even after all our talks together, i knew you'd always do what YOU wanted and were meant to do (i can't wait to hear what that is exactly...).

Google has been lucky all these years to have your perspective and talent - our OG crew started with 5.. and now we've all grown up. i'll miss seeing you around - keep in touch and come back for lunch (should your cooking not pick up right away.. hehe).

Eric Case said...

It's been fantastic working with you for all these years... and the future remains exciting and bright! :)

Congrats,
-E

Coila said...

This sounds an awesome change for you. What a great idea to just take some time off for yourself!

(Would you please delete that last one from Me? And any extras? It looks like I might have posted this a couple times. . .)

thepowerguides said...

Good luck you to an ordinary blogger user , I would like to thank you and your team.

Many forget that Blogger is provided for free by G and are quick to moan ,

I am sure you will find what you want to do do next when the time is right and after charging the batteries.

However good a company is an I am sure G is a great company to work for sometimes a new challenge and even a new direction in life is just the right thing to do

best of luck
stev

Andrew PC Smith said...

Hello from a guy who has used all kinds of blog sites... Thank you for helping make this one the best.

You have to strike out on your own sometimes, to slow down and figure out what life is all about. Kudos to you for doing that. I'm sure you're leaving a well-paying job. But life is not all about the money.
"All men die, few men ever truly live" - Braveheart

Best wishes for your future endeavors, and may God go with you.

~Andrew

Ron Dean said...

I have zero clue who you are and found my way here via the announcement of your departure from blogger.
I have really enjoyed blogger for the short time I have been using it and offer my thanks.
I admire your wilingness to throw yourself into the jobless market to do what you choose.

With luck and admiration

Name: Geeba Monkey said...

Hope to hear happy things about you in the future. It's always a bummer to hear when talented responsive people that are the most important part of a company's success leave. Thanks to people like you, I'm able to enjoy blogging easily. But, the choice, opportunities and independence we all celebrate are yours so Good Luck to you!

Caustic Dave said...

Congratulations and good luck in your future endeavors!

Thanks for listening said...

Cool. What's Google food?

PS: You sound pretty up about it all. If, at some point you get bugged about the change, you can rant on my blog: doesitbugyoutoo.blogdpot.com
(Just trying to help)

AK

Jen said...

I want to do all of that fun stuff too! Good for you. I think it's fantastic that you have the courage to try something new! Good luck!

skomalley said...

You are very lucky to have worked at Google. I would kill for a great job like that, but then again I was an English major. I guess I should have listened to all those college advisers who told me to stick with math, science, and computers. Anyways, you're very lucky to have the luxury to quit your job and float while you find your calling. Good luck with that.

Oh,and check out the excerpts from my novel on my blog (I will be posting them in about a month). I'd post it earlier, but I'm currently finishing up the last rewrite of my year and a half in the making of "The Land of Lost Dreams".

Ah, ha! I can still show those advisers, and make something of myself yet!

Thanks for all your work at blogger, it rocks! I just created my own blog to supplement my upcoming novel.

One more thing, you rock! Even though you did go to Stanfurd.

Anonymous said...

You should look into the GGNRA Endangered Species Big Year if you want to get outside and volunteer.

www.ggnrabigyear.org

Mat Hayward said...

Good luck and have fun! I've heard that Google is the greatest company to work for on Planet Earth. It sounds like you will be greatly missed.

Christina's Corner of the Web said...

Good luck! Though I'm sure you'll be missed by many, change is always good! Best wishes for your future endeavors :).

ABM Q-Boro said...

Best of luck in your future endeavors from us here at Abstract Minds! You'll do fine.

www.AbmNewYork.Blogspot.com

DarkAngelMe said...

I don't know you.. I guess you are like the shoe mending gnomes that work deep into the night and no one thanks (right analogy?).

So, thank you for being one of the night gnomes that mends my ever so fitting shoe - Blogger.

Mercy

Loving Her Beautiful said...

Best wishes to you! Sounds like a great opportunity!
No solid plans sounds like fun, too. And it reminds me of the line from Raiders of the Lost Ark, when Indy tells Sallah he's going after the truck that's carting off the ark. Sallah asks, "How?" and Indy replies, "I don't know, I'm making this up as I go!"
Bon voyage!
BILL
http://lovingherbeautiful.blogspot.com/

modmom said...

thanks for all the help making blogger what it is! i LOVE blogger :)

i hope to be blog of note some day

(you've contributed to helping me conquer cancer. having a blogger blog helped distract me during cancer treatment + surgery. i held a hat design contest for my bald from chemo head that got linked on a big design website that was also hosted on blogger, then i got daily readers + it's been so much fun posting + reading comments + connecting with like minded people all over the world.

Audra said...

Is it a tribute or a jab to have your blog A-listed - especially now that you will have plenty of free time to sort through all the wacky, banal, and non-sensical comments from random strangers and spammmers on the internet?

Αντρέας Φράγκος said...

Dear friend,

Thank you for your services to the bloggers community. It's good to see that you have the guts to follow your heart and to devote precious time and energy to the things you love.

We must invest to our dreams.

Good luck

raq said...

you really are an inspiration to others, by doing what you really want.

thank you for assisting blogger for such a long time and wish you all the best!

Enocia Joseph said...

Just want to wish you all the very best in your endeavours. I admire you for following your heart and your dreams.

Take care. :-)

CITIZENDANGERX said...

I totally need the balls to break out like that. I have gotten really cushy in my job and now I find myself wearing what they call "golden handcuffs." (Which is not a sexy as it may sound.)

alan said...

Good luck, I am in a similar transition myself.

Bob Gentile said...

Change Change Change...

I love it and MORE people should embrace it...EVERYtime I made a career change it was better, yes it was scary, yes I was nervously excited but so glad I did it..

Best Wishes in whatever u decide to do

afqnfulton said...

Good for you! As a medical professional, I can safely say that for anyone who can afford it, it is the healthiest thing you can do for yourself.

Time is the one thing you can never replace. To take time for yourself when you are young and healthy is the best prescription for a full life.

Regards and good luck!

Mark by Chocolate said...

Ah, I remember the days I used to love firing myself from jobs and then living the life...

The valley has changed and I no longer live in the valley, as you can see by my sig, I no longer live in high-tech. So, good luck and enjoy yourself.

A close friend of mine recently left his position as CEO of Playmotion, a company he started, and is now dancing and making hoops. He's loving life.

Alta said...

Good luck!

Greg said...

boy, must be nice to be able to leave work and not have any other job... I'm assuming Google pays well enough for you to take a sabbatical... I've worked paycheck to paycheck for 23 years...

Enjoy the cooking, meditation or whatever else you find yourself doing...

The fact that I was never a Blog of Note doesn't mean we can't be friends.. :)

Good luck in your future endeavours...

Greg

Oryx Orange said...

Congratulations, compadre, from someone who is in the process of doing a similar thing, trying to get more time for what I love to do while still making sure the bills are paid. Your list of new places for your time is almost identical to mine. I never thought to publish mine; nice idea! I hope you get to do every single one of those things on your list. You obviously deserve to.

Beverly said...

You helped me with something once. Thanks! Once of thousands, I'm sure.

Michelle Wun said...

Good luck & All the best!

Thank you for everything!

LaskiGal said...

Oh--good luck with all you do! It sure sounds like you'll be busy. I've lurked around your blog before--but had to comment to give my best wishes!

Todd HellsKitchen said...

Good luck with all your new ventures. It takes a bit of courage to take the dive from a sure thing into uncharted waters. Good for you! Thanks for your service to Blogger all these years... This coming from an appreciative Blogger you've never met...

Wanderer said...

Keep up the good work. Wishing you good luck in whatever you do!

The Fruity Cook said...

Many thanks for all your work.
I've had a remarkable few years as a Blogger and, having ironed out some virtual wrinkles, look set to continue.

Here's wishing you every success in new ventures.

James said...

Wow, sounds great. Most people just don't have the courage to follow their dreams and/or instincts. Very inspiring.

Anonymous said...

travel to India instead :) you can volunteer, sing, dance, read, travel, camp, hike, and have a life-altering experience thrown in as a bonus.

fancypantsnancy said...

It makes me laugh when anyone thinks that being at a job for only 4 years is a long time......

The Senate Site said...

Outdoorsiness....

Come visit Utah. Seriously.

Call me for some great places to explore.

801-673-1603

RC

Del & Al said...

Don't think about the light at the end of the tunnel. Go up and light the bloody thing yourself.
Well done Graham..and good luck!

NB Derwent6

la fourchette said...

Felicitations and bon courage!

"Leap and the net will appear." (I'm not sure who said that but I know it has proven to be true.)

Best of luck!

(And thanks. There is a good chance you've helped me as I've settled into Google's world of blogs.)

Pallav Jagoori said...

Hi,

Don't know you personally. But you sound like a man who believes in chasing his dreams.

All the best to you!

Few know how adventurous, that one breath is...

Regards

Ms. Bones said...

Hi Graham,
Best of luck with your upcoming adventures! I made a similar change in my life last year and it was just about the best decision I ever made.
I'm finding myself doing all sorts of different activities now from event management to long-distance running and way more swing dancing :)

I'm glad that Google brought you to Dublin last year and I got to have one of those 'woah this guy can dance!' moments.

I look forward to reading about your adventures in future.

E.

Fleagirl said...

Not to be sour grapes, because I'm sure you're super smart and earned all the oodles of Google money you now have...but WOW. To be able to quit working in this economy in the Bay Area?

You must have so much money you roll around in it and giggle.

Please describe "Google Food" in detail. That alone is enough for me to want to work there. But to be paid also in gold boullion...! Wow.

Nandini Vishwanath said...

Graham :) I am so sure you won't remember me! My name is Nandini, and I was one of the Ambassadors who came from the India office to MV on an exchange program. I shadowed you, and started maintaining a blog of mine since then :) Thanks for everything. I found out you were leaving from the blogger homepage and thought I should let you know that you will be missed!

Sabri said...

Hey Graham...

I would like to first of all thank you for the wonderful job that you have done for us all this while.

Leaving is always very difficult especially when its something that you love to do. But life is fair. Your sadness will be rewarded with more happiness as I always believe that everything comes in a pair like night and day, hot and cold, hatred and love...

I am envious that you are so multi talented. My talent in music is as good as a scarecrow with a guitar or a cow trying to belt out Il Divo's Hasta El Final ;-p

But cooking, I am pretty good at. Drop me a line if you feel like dishing out some oriental dishes..

Wishing you all the best in your future endeavors...

Sabri
Kuala Lumpur

p/s enjoy the freedom...

Peaceful Blog said...

Best of luck to you. Good guys always leave flavours of their presence even they are faraway.

Travel Macedonia said...

I think that you need to visit Macedonia.
There are many beautiful things to see/learn in here.

Greetings,
Sase

Jason said...

We all need to grab new opportunities when they arise with both hands !

Goodluck dude.

Anonymous said...

WOW! Leave google?? you know how many people would want to work there??? wish I was you right now...

IslandAnchor said...

I don't know you; just saw the message that you were leaving Google and the blogger dashboard. Best of luck to you. It sounds like you are an immensely talented person, that always helps.

Best of everything.

Ombretta Zanetti said...

Awesome Job. Thanks for keeping up this great tool, during my 16 months journey around the "blog" Globe. Blooger Team thanks.....too

Good Luck

Another Unemployed?........... Yeah.
Very Itchy feet
Melbourne, Australia

JASON S said...

All the very Best Buddy in your future endeavors!!

Cheers!!
Jason
I Blog at http://jsbi.blogspot.com

Editor said...

Hello there Graham,
I stumbled upon yer blog when I went to update my own. I'm a real newbie blogger, but it's great to have no expertise and yet speak to the world. Love the name of your blog - whistle dance. You might like to visit Northern Ireland. In the countryside if you meet up with the locals they'll take you to great places with music that will whisk you away. Eilish

Dream Massages said...

Good luck with your move and direction. Though I just started blogging a few weeks ago and basically know nothing about it. I do know that any time someone makes a life choice and starts out on a new journey that it's exiciting. I wish you well.

PDG1 said...

Come visit Canada!!!
if hiking and outdoors is your bag, baby, this is your place.
personally... can't stand the stuff.. but it's everywhere, so I've come to terms with it.

honest. I know here in BC we've got some pretty kick ass forests and lakes, not too sure about the eastern provinces.
Maybe try P.E.I.
They've got som good potatoes :P, and I hear the food is some of the craziest stuff ever, Maybe even crazier than Alberta's world famous *gulp*... PrAiRiE oYsTeRs.

and certainly there's a wealth of good music in Canada... in May I'm going to see Rush in Vancouver :D

It's going to be epic!

I hope you enjoy yourself, whatever you decide to do.
Rock on
~Ryan

jim said...

Hey! Why not! Remember a few years back when it dawned on a bunch of M$ management that they were multi-millionaires slaving away 50-60 hours a week when they could be out indulging themselves or saving the planet? Pffft. Off they went. Didn't seem to hurt the company or Bill's feelings any. In fact I think it started the same process for him. Nobody really works at the same place for 30-40 years any more anyhow. That's sooo 50's. Enjoy! ;-)

Deep Sea said...

Great potential 'to do' list Graham. Something most of us want to do, but rarely are able to.

Good luck!

shineraj said...

Change is a must have catalyst to enjoy life.
Best of luck with all that u wanted to do in life!
Cheers!
SHiNE//

RADIANT GUY said...

Can I have your ex-job at google?

LOL

Well, I wish you all the best following your new dreams...
Regards from Kuwait.

Steve R said...

It's not the goal, it's the journey - enjoy.

sam said...

Life starts when you plant a garden. Jump into the green world. Congrats and use your knowledge to change the world:):)
Peace

Mike said...

if you ever need free help with music, advice, anything, please visit theoutsideworld.ca or email theoutsideworld@gmail.com


cheers and good luck

Cling & Clatter said...

you have a long list of things lined up. wish you luck. my list is still in the making and i have no idea when i'll get a chance to bringing it all to reality

dragonflyfilly said...

good luck Graham, and I'm sure you will enjoy your time with Vapassena, (i did), stop by my Blog, "Flamingo's Hideaway" if you have time.

cheers,
pj

Nick Matyas said...

It's really an impressive posting. I liked it & think that it will be helpful for others. Keep up the good work. Good luck.

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