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Have I Made the Right Decision?

Guest avi8tor72

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Guest avi8tor72

We all reach a point in our lives we know will define us, where we must choose to either take the easy road and die wondering, or take the tough one and live with the consequences.


Im a 25 year old Avionics AME and father of two who has always dreamed of making a career as a pilot. Recently when faced with the decision of sticking with my chosen career, or throwing it all away to follow my dream I chose the latter. And although generally I feel I have made the right decision, I'm still confronted each day with anxiety. Have I made the right decision? How will I support my family financially? What will they miss out on so I can follow my dream? With the anxiety comes self doubt, what if I cant hack it, or develop a medical problem and cant fly.


Perhaps I should be speaking to a psychologist rather than a bunch of guys (and girls) who fly for fun, but then perhaps you are the best source of advice I can ask for.


So what do you think?



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G'day AVI8. And welcome to the forums.


The anxiety your feeling is quite normal, and to be expected given your circumstances.


First of all, you've chosen probably the best time in the history of australian aviation to chase a career in the air. World wide factors such as the opening of many cut price airlines in asia and elsewhere has soaked up all the jet pilots from around the world, this has left huge holes in the local job market.


That being said, its still a tough and expensive road you need to take to get yourself in an employable position. Its just the prospects or the light at the end of the tunnel that are much brighter then they ever have been in australia.


Your only young, so its all in front of you.


Are you concerned that medically you may have some problems?? or are you fit and healthy and just worrying?


I recently had a similar descision to make.. Do i continue driving trucks for a living, coming home unhappy, not looking forward to work at all.. Dragging myself out of bed to go to work. Sure we were financially secure (well thats debatable), but i wasn't a happy camper.


OR, i could get my RAA instructor endorsement and chase a bit of work flying and teaching..


I decided to throw the dice, i could always go back to what i know if things didnt work out.


Well, its been four months now, and i havn't looked back. Im instructing at 2 schools, and almost making what i was in the trucks (almost).


But the huge differance is in ME. I love my job, i look forward to going to work, i come home feeling i have achived something evryday. I feel satisfied, and this shows in my personal life. My kids are happier, my wife is happier. I don't dread going to work.


You need to think about what affect it will have on your family to have an unhappy father and husband mopeing around for the rest of his life wondering "what if?"..trust me, you will do it..


Financial security is very important, don't get me wrong, but its the age old addage "does money buy happiness?"


Ive said it before and ill say it again, there's only one fate worse then death, and thats to live, to live a life unfullfilled and without the courage to follow your dreams.


Jeees, i got on a soap box then didn't i...sorry...


Anyway, keep it up mate, next time your flying, look out the window and think, this is my office, this is where i work...;)





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......What will they miss out on so I can follow my dream? ..........

What will they get if you plod thru life doing what you have to make ends meet? A very unhappy you. Better to try it out than to never know and always wonder!


You have a skill to fall back on and the determination to try something risky...go for it!


I have just recently done something similar...4 kids and the sole bread winner and I left a secure, well paid retail position to take up a slightly lower paid (so far, I'm told that will change) job which gets me into aviation again (i used to be a Blackhawk AME in the ARA). One of the scariest things I have done for a while but gee it makes you know you're alive!


Good luck with it all...I'm sure you'll be fine!





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Guest avi8tor72

Thanks guys, its great to hear words of encouragement from people who have been in a similar situation. You can feel the enthusiasm for what you do in your responses, I look forward to sharing that same enthusiasm with the people I meet.


To answer the health question, no I dont have any health concerns. In the early stages I had a Class 1 medical issued just for peace of mind.


I agree with what you have both said, we spend too much of our lives working to spend it doing somehting we dont enjoy. On the future I agree there certainly seems to be a high demand for pilots in the upper levels, and I guess that will pull the lover levels through, but I cant help wonder what effect rising fuel costs and increasing legislation will have on an already expensive industry. I guess people will always want to fly, and they will need people to fly them (or teach them).



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Avi8tor 72, there is never any certainty in aviation. There are people who will fly for next-to nothing, and there are employers who don't stick to the rules. If you have already made the decision, then that is it. You are probably hooked on aviation and it's a serious disease and maybe you should just accept it.


You can do it as a job, or you can do it as a hobby. In retrospect, I would probably prefer it as a serious hobby, but that would require a lifestyle that permitted it, then you get to fly when YOU want to, if NOT in the plane that you have always thought you would want to fly.( Usually when you achieve it , you find out that it is just another aeroplane anyhow.)


There are a lot of things to consider, one of which is that ALL the calamities at home always seem to occur when you are away on a trip. Your wife has to be the right sort of person to cop this sort of thing. Nev..



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Guest avi8tor72

Yeah thanks Nev and Drifter Driver for your comments, your both right I am hooked and have been for some time. My wife and I have shared many a bottle of wine discussing the idea, and I am fortunate to have such loving support.


Thanks Drifter Driver for the referral to the previous thread, its great to read about people in the same situation.


I too wish I had a lifestyle that allowed me to fly what I wanted, when I wanted, I guess that is every aviators dream. I will just have to settle for whoever will pay me's plane, when they say so (a compromise I am willing to accept, for now).


Thank-you all for your responses, its great to know there are a bunch of like minded guys out there willing to offer some advice.



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Guest Redair

Avi8... over the years I have made several major decissions, which all in their own way were potential risks. Having said that, just about all have worked out for the best, and the odd one that went tits-up taught valuable lessons, and added experience bout life the universe and everything. The main driving force behind what may seem like adventurous behaviour, (in my case at least) has always been the worry that in later years, I might look back and regret never having taken a chance. Too many people don't want to leave their comfort zones, and that's fine.... it leaves more opertunities for the rest of us!!!





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Just found this thread Avi8tor 72


My 2 bobs worth


.....you can always go back to doing what you are currently doing...that is your safety net.


If you continue to do the same as you do now you will always get the same as what you have currently got...


Do you want to be lying on your death bed saying "I wonder if I could have done it?" if not...go out and get what you want...


Surround yourself with like minded people and chase your dream. Dont go seeking approval from other people, you will often not get it because those people are often too scared to do it themselves.


Get yourself a mentor who will champion your cause and encourage you.


The most important thing.... Ask yourself WHY you are doing this and is this what YOU want and not what somebody else wants ?


Go hard and never give up !!!:thumb_up:



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Me too!


That's pretty good advice Flyer. Go into it with your eyes open. The only person who never made a mistake, never made anything. Humans aspire to do difficult things, sheep just walk around in paddocks till they become the chop. Nev..



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Guest avi8tor72

Thanks guys I will definitely take that on board. I agree with you flyer about seeking approval, I have discussed my plans with allot of my colleagues at work, and they are often very negative. They will comment on how expensive it is, and how competitive the industry is. Then I learn that they were taking lessons when they were young but gave it away, and I get the impression they are sorry they did. When I was in the military I always looked up to the aircrew with much admiration, and I guess in my trade we do the hard work and the pilots get all the glory (so to speak), so there is a bit of jealousy from my colleagues in that reagard. But I am a true believer in the fact that mistakes are only mistakes if we learn nothing from them. I could take the advice of those I work with and keep doing what im doing, and be miserable for the rest of my working life, or I can go out and get what I want. I guess I came to this site for that very reason, to hear comments from positive like minded people. But im not looking to gratify my decision, I am very aware that this has to be what I REALLY want, and I cant be doing it for any other reason.



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The only person who never made a mistake, never made anything.

Ain't that the truth....:thumb_up:


Life constantly gives you lessons....it's your choice if you choose to learn them....



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Hey there avi8tor72,


Know exactly what your going through, except it took me quite a bit longer to sort myself out. I had a great job, good money with heaps of international travel, but as the years rolled by I could never shake that dream I had as a young boy.


I remember a wise old man telling me years ago, a week or so before I married..."you can't make anyone happy unless your happy yourself "


At the tender age of 45 I decided to have a go, much to the disbelief of work colleagues and friends. Fortunately my wife and kids could see the effect my previous life was having on me, it was the frustration on their faces that woke me up...


So, I completed my CPL and Flight Instructor rating a few years ago and haven't looked back since. Sure the money is not within a bulls roar of what I was earning, and as others here have pointed out, that's not what life is all about.


That wise old man I mentioned, well he's my dad. The look on his face when I showed him my shiny new CPL brought a tear to my eye......somehow he just knew.


I'm 51 now and have never been happier............:thumb_up:



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Hi there merv,


Have not done any instructing for a year or two, but that may change shortly.


When I was, it was out at Bankstown. Been down in Canberra doing a bit of charter work lately. CN is a real nice place, can see myself full time instructing there.....;)







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Wow...this is all very inspiring. I too have always wanted to fly since a wee tacker and with my teachers at school thinking that Pilots are these people high up on Peder stools, I was promptly told I didnt have the brains to do it. Well silly me believed it! Years on I was lucky enough to get a ride in the cockpit of an Air New Zealand 767 and got chatting with the Captain who shocked me when he said it would be hard but if that is what I wanted, I could do it! Wow....wish I had that Captains name now! I started flying training and hold a PPL with a pass in CPL, Instument and ATPL theory subjects. He was right. The ATPL was hard but what an acheivment for me! I cant wait for a school reunion so I can bitch slap those Teachers! I would love to get a flying job of some kind. Reading what you guys have done has had me thinking.


What license or certificate? do you need if you were to start a joy flight business running Trikes? Maybe this has been chatted about before but I cant find anything on it. Obviously with GA you need a CPL. Trikes, im curious.......


Scotty i_dunno



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