After I finished my Ph.D. at the University of Chicago, I tried very hard to do what I was ‘supposed’ to do—interview for an academic teaching position at some sort of prestigious university. But I couldn’t do it. Instead, I moved to the wilderness of northwest Montana. Here’s what happened instead:
- I developed self-reliance. In the city, my go-to response was to get the nearest person to help. But here in this remote area, there were no neighbors to be called when emergencies happened.
- I developed a wide skill set. In rural and remote areas, by necessity, you become a generalist. I did things I never would have done had I remained in the city.
- I developed openness. In the city, I held staunch beliefs about issues such as the need for gun control. Living in the country, I developed a deeper and more fleshed-out understanding of diverse views
- I developed leadership skills. In the city, civic organizations can feel large and intimidating. In a rural setting, everyone pitches in.
- I developed passion for different things.
- I discovered the freedom of identity.
Check out my full story on Tiny Buddha: “Our Creative Genius Shows Us Possibilities the Rational Mind Can’t See” :