One of my friends asked me for some advice about how he could change his life. “I’ve come to the conclusion,” he remarked, “that I will never be happy unless I’m making a living as a musician.”
“Well,” I said, “you might as well go for it, then. The worst that can happen is that you’ll fail, and be only as unhappy as you are now.”
So he did. He’s now the drummer for a band called The Modern. They’re playing gigs almost every other evening and he says the schedule’s quite exhausting, but when you see him play you just know he’s having the time of his life.
The Modern’s new single, Jane Falls Down, hit the UK charts at number 35 this week. If you’re into solid performance, dance beats, gorgeous glam, exquisite electropop, new experiences, or the kind of tunes that play themselves repeatedly in your head for days, go get it – downloadable from iTunes and MSN, and available in all good record stores except mine, which had annoyingly sold out.
Do you hate your job?
What kind of job would you like to do instead?
Why aren’t you doing it?
In fact, the thing that annoys me the most is knowing that somehow, this is the best job I will ever get in my profession. That’s what bugs me: knowing that I’m not nearly experienced enough, but feeling fairly certain I will not be working as a consultant while still being happy in any other company out there. This feeling of having reached a peak gives all sorts of opportunities to commodism, and I have to be quite careful with that.
I had aimed the post at people who passionately want to do something else (and because I think The Modern are a tight, beautiful, annoyingly addictive band who deserve a shot at the top spots.)
I guess if you’re fairly happy it may be worth sticking where you are.
I was fairly happy, but am glad that I didn’t settle for any less than astonishingly happy. “Fairly happy” I think I can get in many places, and I’ve found it’s worth the slight deviation in happiness just to have a change. But then, change also makes me happy…
What if your dream job – the one which challenges you, helps you grow and rewards you appropriately – is out there, and you miss it because you’re settled?
Or, to put it another way – do you want to do what you’re doing now for the rest of your life? If so then fantastic; there’s few enough people who can say that, even if it’s merely an ‘acceptable’ job rather than an ‘amazing’ one.
If not, then when do you plan to stop doing it?
Why I am not chasing my “dream job”:
First, because my job is not the most important thing in my life. I have more important goals, and my current job is the best available means to achieve those goals. I don’t live to work; I work to live.
Second, because I have learned—the hard way—that “making money doing what you love” is pure fantasy. Whenever money gets involved, ugliness begins to set in. The things that we enjoy most are the things that we do how we want, when we want, where we want, with whom we want, and above all if we want. Ask a sex-worker how they feel about having sex.
I would hope that your answer to the question “Do you hate your job?” would be “No”. My job isn’t the most important thing in my life either, but it takes up more of my time than anything else. I think if I hated it, I wouldn’t care how much money it made me.
But then, I guess people have different priorities. As long as you’ve thought them through, who am I to judge?