It seems there is a lot of buzz going around in my immediate surroundings about jobs/careers. I have several friends who have recently graduated from programs and who are on the hunt for jobs in their fields. A great many more have recently quit or are fixing to quit the jobs they hate(d), and some, like me, are just trying to figure a way to make money doing what they love instead of simply what they managed to get hired to do.
I think about this subject almost every day. Almost every day I am haunted by the idea that what I do to earn money is so many miles away from what brings me joy or any sense of satisfaction. Nor does it pay very well (except for the decent benefits package). Were it not for the fact that I do happen to love working with the public, my job would be a complete bust.
I have always said that I don't believe any job is shameful or beneath me. I would do anything it took to support myself and, now, my son. But I also don't like the idea of waste, of any kind of waste. And I think that working at a job that does not challenge, excite, or even mildly interest the job-holder is a very unfortunate waste of talent and potential.
When I first graduated from college, I had every intention of working, somehow, in a way that related to writing. The problem was that I didn't have any experience and couldn't afford to take an unpaid or stipend-offering internship. It wasn't long into the reality of paying my bills without any kind of student loan safety net that I began to feel that that ship had sailed, and I quickly gave up any efforts toward finding a job doing what I loved; at that point I just wanted to do whatever would pay enough to keep the Discover card payment collectors off my back.
Today I awoke with the memory of last night's old friends and new acquaintances--all of whom are my age or younger and working in challenging, interesting careers--in my mind, and it gave me a renewed sense of job-related hope.
Today's New Activity: Getting Back on (Job-Related) Track
As if to push me over the edge just a little bit more, my best gal Kelsi informed me that she gave her two weeks' notice at her own job and is now officially off to begin building her private practice as a Marriage and Family Therapist. I think that's a very courageous leap, and knowing that she's out there, doing her thing and taking that leap, was just the little extra motivation I needed.
My Mom and Dad were talking to me about a concept related to dream fulfillment a few months back. They said that when you are looking make your wishes and hopes a reality, you should consider each step you take, first asking yourself whether taking that step gets you closer to or further away from your desired destination. It's a very simple concept but I find it profound.
I know something has changed in me recently because I don't allow myself to entertain very long the notion of taking jobs I know won't edify or fulfill me. I never used to give that kind of pause. The old me would have taken another job in retail management by now, just to kind of keep at bay the feeling of discomfort that arises when I acknowledge that I'm not doing what I'm supposed to be doing....at least if I went into some of the management opportunities I know are possibilities, I would be making decent money while not doing it.
I don't want to live like that anymore. I don't want to take one single more crappy job. Today I began taking the first baby steps toward reawakening the feeling I had when I just *knew* doing something related to writing was my (and I hate to get all Rachel Berry from Glee (though honestly her determination is inspiring)) destiny.
CraigslistMonsterHotJobsetcetc recruiters beware. *You're* about to get spammed this time around.