I started working for them in January. By the end of October, I told them I quit.

We were tasked with turning one of the top rated strategy games of all time into one of the world's flagship tests of a new set of economics. An industry in transition, it was very much time to sink or swim, and despite the fact that I was the lowest ranked developer on the team, somehow the freedom to build the core server infrastructure that would power that test had fallen into my lap. As far as things went, it was a fun problem, and when it came to personal growth, I experienced an incredible change in the way I looked at bits, bytes and my abilities at large

But I wasn't proud.

I wanted to build new ways for people to identify, communicate, and connect with each other. I wanted to enable new types of markets, new breeds of cultures, and a large scale attempt to integrate the world in a way that only the thousands of miles of fiber that share everything between us could ever allow.

I wanted to try to do something fundamental, and I didn't care if it made me rich, famous, or important, I just wanted to rouse my curiosities and live a life that got my balls off. But instead, I enabled post-adolescent males to fantasize about being generals in the Second World War and a company to make money selling funny costumes for their digital dolls to wear in chat rooms before and after battle.

I've always cared deeply about what I do, but when I woke up each day to see the product of my effort do nothing more than help prop up the share price of a company driven primarily by public sentiment towards Spongebob Squarepants, a string of reality TV shows, and the potpourri of overpriced licenses its various studios lived and died by, I couldn't help but feel conflicted.

I just couldn't get engaged.

They thought I was being idealistic.

And though I'll never deny that I can't get through life without an image of how it should be, to them I was willing to let that image become a destructive force in my career: unbalanced by any sense of pragmatism, or even simple reality. After all, they had come from companies that lobbied to get local labour laws lifted just so they could mandate periods of 100 hour work weeks with no raise in pay. They came from organizations with at least 20 intermediate "opportunities" to climb through en route from grunt to executive, and all the disconnects in engagement, communication and progress that came in between. So when it came to policy, they told me that somehow, even though I would go weeks at a time with nothing to do because I was "blocked", was disqualified for a performance review because I started a month too late, and wouldn't be allowed to work from home without signing away everything I did there too, I had it made.

I mean, don't get me wrong, in comparison, we were treated really well. There could have been more meetings. They could've forced more hours. And really, they were better than their peers. I just never understood how that was a valid argument.

When I workout, I don't compare my strength to people who barely break a sweat, just so they don't spill their Diet Coke on their velour when they run. When I was in school, I wouldn't compare my grades to kids who never showed up, and couldn't feel satisfied on an exam just because everyone else wrote it worse than I did. And when I look at it, I don't think its fair to be any less judgmental of the company I work for than I am of my self.

Just because the grass is always greener doesn't mean that sometimes you aren't standing in mud.

It wasn't easy leaving.

Given my involvement with the project, it would've been a lot less disruptive if I stayed around for another 6 months. We hadn't even hit beta yet, and they said that if I stayed long enough to help see the system stand on its own, they'd bump my salary considerably and see what they could do about getting me promoted up into Corporate.

But I couldn't do it.

I get through life by following my passions: by finding things that interest me and hoping that it all works out. I'm not an inherently disloyal person, or even one with difficulties committing to things I believe in. I just live in a world where reality dictates that sometimes you have to throw in the towel and know when to change course. I woke up tired every day. I went to sleep bored every night. My own projects were stalling, I wasn't learning, and nothing interested me. It was one of those times.

They asked me what I wanted to do in my life, and all I could really tell them is that I wanted to surround myself with amazing people and build incredible things. I don't dig networks because I like packets and routing and bandwidth and baud, but because of the ability they create for people to connect, collaborate and democratize things we never thought we could. I don't dig technology for electronics and spaceships and pixels and copper, but because its disruptive, and creates the ability for us to completely rip apart archaic economic systems, management structures and barriers to growth. And though I may not know exactly what I want out of it all, I'm not sure that matters: I knew it wasn't there, and I had to go.

I might be a dreamer, and I might be idealistic, but if my curiosities don't satisfy me I don't know what will.

Today, I'm 24 years old.

I'll be 25 next year, and 30 in 5 more. We see life as a consequence of who we compare ourselves to, and when you distill it down, you're left with two choices: you can compare yourself to complacency, or you can find the motivation to do something real.

I have friends that struggle to pay rent. I have some that are unemployed, some that are unemployable, and some that just don't care. And if I compared myself to them, I'd be insane to complain about working at a place that sat me down in a Herman Miller chair and put me on a career path to live and die a working class professional.

But I also have other friends. They build companies in Shanghai, land venture rounds in the Valley, and get asked to consult for the government after hanging out at Goldman Sachs and Mckinsey. They build search at Google, pursue doctorates at MIT, and trip out on acid at RISD on weekends. I might be young, but when I look at them, its hard not to feel like I'm falling behind. Every passing day, I find it harder and harder to go uninspired by the endless stream of accomplishment that flows from all ends of humanity.

By the age 17, my dad wasn’t allowed back in the United States. By 22, he met my mom, and within 3 years they were married, had 2 properties and ran their own business. Then they got tired of it, had me, and my Mom started building her store, which would 20 years later enable a quality of life that I would never be able to reach again if I kept living my life the way I was. My dad, on the other hand, would have an aneurism 3 months after my third birthday, be forced to retire young, and head off into the countryside to pursue a life of self-sustenance a few years later.

6 months might not be a long time to defer a decision. But shit happens, and 6 can easily turn to life.

I started working for them in January. But the world is big, life is short, and we live by doing. So I quit.