Kurt Bell

A life of courage, joy and independence.

A lifetime of regret – Sons of Grizzly – Lylesbrother

“Hi Kurt,

My name is OOOO and, like many others, I’ve been watching your videos for a long time now. The genuine insights and wisdom you provide and offer is what has had me watch your videos and has led me to ask you a question that has been causing me a tremendous amount of stress, anxiety and uncertainty toward the future of my life. And I really hope you could provide some insight.

My issue is this: Back in 2010 when I was OO years old, I began what is now a full-fledged teaching career. I packed my bags and flew over to teach in a small town in South Korea for one year and it was undoubtedly the best year of my life. I loved every moment of it and the best part was that I finally figured out what I wanted to do in my life, which was to be a teacher. But during my time there, my family had me consider what I would I do when I came back to Canada. And that led me to apply to a very competitive graduate teaching program at the University of OOOO. Well, I got in and it was bitter sweet because on one end I was shocked and elated that I would be on the path to earning a masters degree but I was terribly saddened that I would be leaving the place I loved, Korea.

I came back to Canada and began my 2 year masters program with not a day going by wanting to return to where I had just come from. The 2 years flew by and I recently graduated back in June of this year and I am now a certified elementary school teacher. Now even after two years, I’m still wanting to go back, but now I feel torn between two worlds and I’ve been split between what “I should do” and what “I want to do”…

Now, over the this past year, before I graduated and up until now, I began asking teachers, principals, my friends, my family and professors on what they would do in terms of staying or going back to Korea. This created a lot of noise in my head but most of the advice/suggestions was all boiling down into stay here. This was mostly because everyone felt that I should aim to get experience here in a full-curriculum classroom rather than only teaching English. The trouble here, like so many other places, is that the teaching market in Canada (especially inToronto) is EXTREMELY competitive. In addition to that, many people have told me that it would be even harder for me to start over and find a teaching job in Canada after another lengthy overseas hiatus. Many times I’ve been told that “I would be putting my life on hold”. And another troubling factor is the “power of my degree”. I’m a fresh a graduate and I’ve been told that my degree may not hold or yield the kind of opportunities I have now if I left for a year or two or longer.

So here I am, I’m OO years old now… I have no wife and no children yet. And I feel as though I have this window of opportunity closing in terms of going back. And I worry that I may never go back if I stay here. Half of me sees the truth and wisdom in what everyone is saying about staying where I am now and find a job here. The other half of me wants to go back. I would love to live in Korea again for a few years, then Japan for awhile and then maybe somewhere else. I know eventually I want to come back to Canada, but that’s what I really want to do. I just don’t know what the right path is for me… I’m really concerned that if I leave, I might be putting myself into a real bind when I return.

Sadly, tonight I turned down a contract with the very same school I left 2 1/2 years ago in South Korea… The timing of the opportunity of this happening is quite remarkable…But I’ve decided to not go because of the council and advice of my family, friends and partly my own intuition. But I really feel as though I’ve betrayed a part of myself…I’m scared to death of never experiencing what I had when I was over there and I’m even more scared that I will never go back because maybe I won’t be able to…Who knows, maybe there won’t be any jobs. I was told tonight by my former boss that many schools in Korea are hiring within their country now and don’t need foreign teachers to teach like they used to. I’m not quite sure though…

If you have any thoughts or insights about what I’ve written here I would greatly appreciate it. I know you get a lot of mail. I just really hope you could provide me with an idea of what the right course is to take.

Thank You,



The Path of WildnessThe Path of Wildness is easy to find
The course of a stream
Leaves blown in the wind
A beast’s track through the brush
And the direction of our first inclination

The Path of Wildness is an answer and response to a prescribed way of life which may leave some individuals with a sense that their living is little more than a series of pre-determined, step-like episodes between birth and death. The stages of living between these events: childhood, adolescence, adulthood, parenthood and senior are themselves natural and in accord with the needs of the species and most individuals. Many find their satisfaction in living this course and to these individuals I have little or nothing to say. Others though long for something more; something innate, genetic and seemingly calling. Adventure and change can give a degree of satisfaction and relief yet even these may seem too tame. To those who feel drawn to something beyond the entertainment and stimulation of senses I offer a walk along The Path of Wildness. Don’t bother penciling the event in your schedule, preparing a pack with goodies and supplies or even inviting a friend along, for this experience is along the course of your first inclination and you must surely always go alone.

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You can also reach me via email at the following address: dinnerbytheriver@gmail.com


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