Where Do You See Yourself in the Next Five Years?

Last Updated on: September 28, 2023

It’s been almost a decade since I first answered the question in 2014, “Where do you see yourself in five years?” From where I’m standing, I can say that I wasn’t accurate in my prediction.

If my memory serves me right, when the HR interviewer asked me where I see myself in five years, I gave a diplomatic answer.

At the time, the words I said were what I thought I needed to speak to land the job.

I told her I could see myself in a higher position in the company, leading my own team and having more responsibilities. That was the first step I took into the rat race.

Looking back, I gave that answer with only one thing on my mind. I wanted to please my interviewer so that she’d give me the job – which I badly needed at that time.

Where am I five years later?

What Do The Next Five Years Look Like?
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Fast forward to the “five years” since that question. I am nowhere near the position that I expected to be in. Heck, I’m not even in the company that I tried my best to give the “right” answer.

I am now in a job which, in the back of my mind, I will go to, just not as early as my late twenties. Maybe I got sick of my old job, office politics, and the never-ending corporate rat race, so I decided to quit. 

I am now a teacher, and I think this is the profession for me. Looking back, the stresses and challenges that I went through were necessary before I could see what I wanted to be.

Update: I am also no longer a full-time teacher, but still teaches through other ways.

If it weren’t for the heartaches and disappointments along the way, I would have been swayed to a different path. Maybe I even went deeper or higher in the corporate world.

It sure is impossible to say what will happen in five years because we can’t see far into the future. But I believe that where I am now is where I should be at this moment in my life. 

I know that God allowed certain things to happen to give me the skills, knowledge, and experience I’ll need.

It is the benefit of hindsight that things become more apparent. And looking back on the last five years, there were significant changes in my life that I’ll never have in any other way.

1. I was “benched” on the job. 

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Photo By Inzmam Khan On Pexels.com

For almost three months, I was sent to the bench to do self-paced training while waiting to be assigned to a project.

If not for that experience, I would never have discovered reading. I would never have known the frustration of not doing anything productive day in and day out. And I would have never realized the importance of personal development.

2. I became a part of incredible teams.

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I was privileged to be placed on teams that have the same vibes. I made friends and remained friends with most of them. I attended some of their weddings, became a godfather to some of their children, and learned much about teamwork.

Many of my teammates and managers became my mentors on the job and helped me develop personally and professionally. I will forever be grateful to them.

READ MORE: The Wonderful Relationship of Shared Stress in the Workplace

3. I was exposed to different technologies. 

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In less than four years, I was exposed to several technologies that are still helpful to my current job as a teacher. I learned about virtualization, cloud technology and administration, robotic process automation, and data migration.

I also witnessed the fast-paced technological advancements, which I usually share with my students, like artificial intelligence and machine learning. That’s why I think the academe lags far behind the industry, and we need to catch up quickly.

4. I discovered running and rediscovered volunteerism.

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Because of the company anniversary, I discovered the fun of running and never looked back. I also rediscovered volunteerism through the company’s corporate citizenship initiative, which I’m very thankful for.

READ MORE: A Life-changing Journey Through Quarter-Life Crisis

5. I returned to school to study teaching.

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I returned to school and learned the art and science of teaching. I still have a long way from what I aspire to be as a teacher, but I think I’m progressing.

I am grateful to have great teachers who shared their abundant knowledge and guidance with aspiring educators like me. 

READ MORE: Year 1 in the Academe: Complete

6. I returned to my home province.

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At the beginning of my stay in Metro Manila, I thought I would grow old there. I never realized the opportunities I took for granted in my home province. I am now teaching full-time, living with my family, and aiming to do other things in the future. 

Final Thought:

If I ever try again to answer where I see myself five years from now, I think I’ll say, I don’t know. Better yet, I don’t want to know. 

I just want to live one day at a time while still picturing some possible scenarios in my life. I will try to be a better version of myself and give the highest honor to God.

I just need to wait and keep faith in God that things will be better, much better than today.

“We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.”

Proverbs 16:9

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