Do you come home from the end of your work day so drained that all you want do is waste away the rest of the night with a binge session of Game of Thrones? Do you escape from your job once the bell rings on Friday? Have you ever felt like your job is killing you?
Will you take your job to your deathbed with regrets?
If you answered yes to these questions, something is wrong. Something has to change. Your job shouldn’t drain you, it should fulfill you. It should energize you.
Take a moment to watch this video by School of Life on six ideas to help us on the path of finding fulfilling work:
- Being confused about career choice is perfectly normal. Did you know that we have half a million career options to choose from? The options are endless, and often our 18 year old selves may end up picking the wrong one. Confusion is natural and fear is inevitable, but don’t let that cripple you from making any decision at all.
- Know yourself. For the moment, put away your concerns about money. Make a list of everything you’ve ever enjoyed doing, and somewhere within that will be the shape of where you might see yourself in the future.
- Think a lot. A new job isn’t going to show up out of the blue. It will take reflection, and it will take time.
- Try something. You can’t just think about making a change. You have to try new things. Have you thought about pursuing a different career? Take a MOOC. They’re free.
- Reflect on what makes people unhappy. Can you figure out how something you enjoy doing might make someone else happy? Pursue it. It could be the start of a new entrepreneural venture.
- Be confident. Have the courage to pursue your passions.
Great, you have an idea for a job that may be more fulfilling, but it doesn’t pay your bills. It’s always a dilemma. How do you leave the job that provides you with financial security for something more risky, more uncertain? For difficult questions like these, I always lean on Seth Godin.
“When what you do is what you love, you’re able to invest more effort and care and time. That means you’re more likely to win, to gain share to profit. On the other hand, poets don’t [always] get paid.
I think it makes sense to make your art your art, to give yourself over to it without regard for commerce.
Doing what you love is as important as ever, but if you’re going to make a living at it, it helps to find a niche where money flows as a regular consequence of the success of your idea. Loving what you do is almost as important as doing what you love, especially if you need to make a living at it. Go find a job you can commit to, a career or business you can fall in love with.
Maybe you can’t make money doing what you love (at least what you love right now). But I bet you can figure out how to love what you do to make money (if you choose wisely).
Do your art. But don’t wreck your art if it doesn’t lend itself to paying the bills…
The twist is that as soon as you focus on your art and leave the money behind, you may discover that this focus turns out to be the secret of actually breaking through and making money.” – Seth Godin, Linchpin: Are you Indispensable?
Bottom line is that a fulfilling job isn’t going to come pre-packaged with a pretty bow on top. You have to be willing to make a change. Take the risk. Try new things. Pursue new ideas. Make the small changes that may lead to bigger decisions.
Join me as I leave my very comfortable, very financially secure nest for something more risky. I may fall flat on my face…but it could also lead to work that I love. Work that I find more fulfilling.