Thanks for being a subscriber…and welcome to a new logo, look, and liveliness from your Dream Job Life coach.
Once a week, on Wednesday, when you’re in the middle of your workweek and perhaps beginning to fantasize about the weekend, you’ll get a little JOLT insight or inspiration to help you take the hump out of hump day.
Around mid-month, the JOLT will be an insight, like today’s. The others will be short and sweet, an inspiration…to ideally give your Wednesday that loose and easy Saturday feel.
Today’s JOLT insight is about dreams.
There’s lots of talk about pursuing dreams and one’s “vision” yet, if you’re like me, maybe you grew up in a culture that simply valued hard work with no real attention to the feelings surrounding it.
Simply being able to pay the rent or mortgage, put food on the table, and ideally save to enable your kids to get an education and yourself a modest retirement after 62 was as far reaching as many dreams extended.
And there’s nothing wrong with that thinking. That salt-of-the-earth mentality is respectable and honorable even to this day and no one can fault someone who buckles down, does what has to be done, and maybe even accidentally turns a more utilitarian job into an actual vocation.
Perhaps it was even easier in the days when there were less choices as to what one would actually do with their life. With little awareness of options, it may have been easier to be at peace with your “place” in life.
For example, I had the good fortune to be able to travel into the former Soviet Union after college before the wall came down. I was with a tourist group that travelled in from Helsinki to the then Leningrad. Some fellow travellers brought gum, nylons, and cassette tapes (yes, this was a while back!) to give to the Russian traders who would congregate behind the hotel at night on the banks of the Baltic. The Russians brought icons and flags and wanted to trade for Western items they couldn’t get elsewhere. My friends didn’t want to trade, but just gave them the items they brought as gifts.
The impactful moment was when, in chatting with a Russian citizen who spoke incredibly good English, he asked me where I was from? I told him Texas and that I had attended college in Austin, at the University of Texas.
He then proceeded to tell me more about Austin than I knew about the whole Soviet Union! I was amazed at his knowledge and intelligence. I then asked what he did for a living. He said that he delivered milk. I was again amazed. “What? You are so incredibly smart, you know so much about the world, and you speak such good English, and you deliver milk?” (I phrased it better than that, so it didn’t sound lik an insult.)
He got my point and responded “Here, they tell you what you will do, and you do it. They told me I am to deliver milk, so I deliver milk.”
I immediately felt so privileged to live in a free society where I could maybe NOT know what I wanted to do yet (just after graduation), or have tons of choices, or take some time to figure it out, or try one thing and then decide to do another thing.
[On a side note, some people who’ve heard this story claim that he was surely KGB. Yet, who knows? It’s completely understandable that in some societies there are not the options we have in the more developed world!]
But did he have it better, or did I? Does having more options serve us? One might see it either way.
I’m of the opinion that having freedom of options is a privilege if you use it, much like the right to vote. The right to vote itself is only a privilege if it’s utilized.
As for one’s career, there’s nothing ultimately wrong with sticking with the straight and narrow, and to simply HAVE a job after the ravaging Great Recession is a blessing.
And yet having a Dream Job, something that engages our real passions, is a privilege if we take it…and refuse to settle for less. It definitely takes work and finesse and clarity and connections to make our way into a Dream Job, and yet what is the alternative? Grin and bear it?
In starting this weekly missive, I’m moving more toward my own Dream Job Life of writing more regularly, rather than only books every decade. I always considered being a “blogger” something I just wasn’t capable of…but in now marrying my desire to write more with technology, I say “Why not?!”
What actions will move you toward your Dream Job Life today? What little step can you take ? What outreach can you muster to get support from someone else? What bold requests can you make? And what can you keep pursuing even in the face of all the reasons not to?
“Action expresses priorities”–Mahatma Ghandi