I am one of the lucky ones; the ones who does not consider my work “work”. But what if we were all this lucky? In fact, why isn’t it an expectation rather than a dream to find satisfaction and joy in work? Or is it and we are just executing our expectations wrong?
I can’t speak for everyone but I know that I need my work to be engaging, purposeful, social, challenging and at times overwhelming. I am happiest when I am creating things that help others, when I have multiple projects all happening at once, when I have flexibility and freedom to run with ideas (and run I will). I think I even prefer a bit of chaos to order. I have found the work style and lifestyle that makes me happy. I have found my ideal or at least something so great that I can’t imagine wishing for better.
And now that I have found this bliss, all I want is for everyone around me to be able to say the same. That’s why I sneak as much life advice as possible to students when I am teaching. That’s why I nudge (sometimes push) my friends and family to make choices that get them closer to this dream, often flooding them with ideas and resources and inspiration.
Maybe it’s my internal optimism but I do not see why we can’t all design a lifestyle and life’s work we love. (“Job” “career” or even “profession” seem far too narrow to describe how we need to see ‘the-thing-we-spend-most-of-our-time-doing and earn-most-of-our-resources-from’).
I have too many thoughts to fit in a blog post to truly explain why and how this seems so realistic but it stems from this quote I just read and taking a good, long, informed, and open-minded look at what you truly need to survive and what you truly need to be happy. Money is part of it. Location is another. The ability to go out to eat, wear expensive clothes, and feed our technology addiction are others.
There are a lot of variables to consider but more importantly is the ability to see these options clearly, to simplify, to envision alternatives, and to know the true expenses and benefits of different aspects of our lifestyle.
At one point or another everything we have –all our responsibilities, our possessions, our emotional baggage – we said “yes” to. We accepted into our lives. And every day we have the choice to reconsider that yes and remold our life and re-situate our responsibilities.
If you are reading this you are part of the 1% and you have the freedom to be happy – but too often it’s our past “yeses” that are weighting us down.