Hey everyone, I hope all is well. Today I wanted to touch on the subject of finding fulfillment in your work, which to me comes down to working for your own purpose and not someone else’s.
Most people are not working the job of their dreams and aside from a paycheck, are getting nothing out of their work. They trade their time for money and are content with that transaction. The key to gaining a sense of fulfillment from your work is knowing that it’s going to help you achieve you’re personal goals and allow you to get to the next level.
No matter what you’re currently doing for work, there are things you are going to learn and skills you will acquire which will help you achieve your end goal, whatever that may be. In my own experience there have been times where certain tasks in my daily work routine seem so simple and routine, but there have come times outside of work where I’ve realized those routine tasks have built a strong skill set.
I use Microsoft Excel quite often at work and one day a group of friends and I were putting together some data for a side project, so I used excel to organize everything and generate a lot of useful information. To me it was nothing, but no one else in the group would have been able to create such an elaborate spreadsheet with such ease.
Another great example is the fact that I work for a large corporation, a lot of departments and support groups are located all over the world and sometimes it’s difficult to track down someone who can provide a solution to your problem, or who has access to the information you need. From this set of circumstances I’ve learned to be very direct with whoever I’m talking to. To get right to the core of the issue and discovering what they can offer me. If not a solution, at least a different contact who may be able to assist. This direct way of communicating again has transitioned into other areas of my life where it has proven to be useful.
The bigger issue I’ve noticed in my own experience, as well as through the experience of close friends, is that your job is designed for a specific purpose within a business that has it’s own agenda, and you may not connect with that purpose.
If you work for a larger corporation, often time your work is very specialized and the tasks you are responsible for are simply a small piece of a larger process, of which you may never get to see the end results.
This creates a difficult situation because without seeing the impact of your work, it can sometimes feel completely arbitrary. The simplest solution I can offer is create your own business that you are sincerely interested in. Do what you love. It’s what you’ve been told since elementary school. You’ll never work a day of your life if you love what you do.
Unfortunately it’s not always that simple. If you’re like me, you don’t have the capital to spring a business out of the ground. Not only are you lacking capital, but in my case, I have student loans that need to be paid, so I need to be generating enough income to live and pay back my debts NOW. Building a business takes time and usually the profits won’t begin to flow for years.
There are some business models that require minimal capital to start out, such as internet based businesses, internet marketing, or even rental real estate, if you do it right and can get approved for a mortgage. But these are subjects I will save for a later article.
So most people (myself included) go out and enter the workforce. Without a ton of job experience you’re forced to take the best opportunity you can get, and unless you’re extremely lucky, you’re not going to fall in love with your first ‘real job’.
The situation I’m describing is something that most people in their 20’s can relate to and it’s really not the worst position to be in. As long as you’re learning what aspects of the job you like, and those which you dislike, you can begin to hone in on what will eventually bring you fulfillment. In the mean time you will be gaining job experience, learning new skills, meeting new people, and generating income.
Income that can be used to purchase a domain and hosting to begin your own blog. Why? Because I enjoy writing, and maybe a blog can lead to writing or speaking opportunities in the long run. Maybe learning WordPress, and how to host a blog can get me familiar enough with web design to break into internet marketing myself, and create a second stream of income.
There are too many opportunities out there right now in the modern world to just accept your salary, or hourly wages as the only way to make money. Find out what you’re good at, what you enjoy doing, and what you have to offer that people would pay for.
If you can play an instrument well, teach lessons, or create a video series of lessons to post on YouTube. If you know how to invest, create an eBook about that and sell it (or give it away) online. Whatever your passion is in life and whatever brings you joy, find a way to incorporate that into what you do for a living.
It’s a process. This usually isn’t something you can just jump right into. (But if you can, more power to you, and I’d love to hear about it). You have to stay focused on what you want in the long term and maintain a positive attitude about where you currently are.
In the mean time, enjoy your life outside of work. Fill your free time with the things that bring you the most happiness and make you feel most alive. If you can stay positive and be accepting of where you are, even when you know it’s not exactly where you hope to one day end up, when you finally get to where you’re going, you’ll be able to appreciate it that much more.
The other day I stopped at Chipotle to grab a burrito for a late dinner. The place was winding down since it was getting close to closing time, so there was only one girl making the food, and one girl at the register. The girl making my burrito was very cheerful, funny, and energetic. We actually had an amusing conversation in between my order being taken and put together. I’m sure her life long dream wasn’t to make burritos, but she was enjoying where she was currently at, and making the best of it.
The girl at the register was the opposite. I could tell she viewed me as just another customer and couldn’t wait to fulfill her obligation and go back to counting the minutes before her shift would end.
If I had to guess, the first girl, who had a positive attitude about her job will probably go on to achieve more, and advance her career to new levels. Although her current duty probably doesn’t bring her fulfillment, she really seemed to like the fact that she was able to interact with people as she prepared their food. Focusing on this positive aspect, she was able to make her job more enjoyable for both herself and the customers. Customer interaction and people skills may one day lead her to a successful career in sales.
So what aspects of your job are truly enjoyable to you? What can you focus on in your current situation that will keep you motivated and help you grow in the future?
I would suggest that you really take a look at where you’re at and what’s great about it. And more importantly, begin to focus on where you’re headed and where you’d like to be.
Times going to pass regardless of whether or not you have a sense of direction. You either become a victim of circumstance or the master of your destiny. The choice is yours.
That’s all for now. I’m going to run to the gym before they close. Hopefully I’ll find time to post again soon. Right now I’ve been tied up building the actual blog and making everything function properly. It’s taken awhile to figure things our but it’s been a great learning experience.
If you’ve read this far, leave me a comment and let me know what you think.
As always, thanks for reading.by