At the moment it is a quarter to 1 in the morning here in Darwin. My partner and I patiently wait for our flight to Brisbane while a cacophony of noises from the various passengers filters through the airports sitting areas; men are slumped lengthwise over couches, solo travellers hunch protectively over their bags, little children run rampant as their young mothers chase after them, there is something I truly do love about airports. Others might dread being in them, a sense of claustrophobia shrouding over them, but for me, it’s so interesting observing all the different kinds of people that converge here. Personally, I love browsing the stores, while as expected, these shops price things a percentage higher than regularly, don’t you just love the strategies they’ve put in place to entice the unassuming traveller to purchase their various goods? It’s the perfect setting to observe human behaviour and even consumer consumption behaviour. As I sit here watching my partner taking a quick nap, his breathing slowing down a bit, as we’ve been on our feet the past 24 hours getting all our things out of our old apartment and so on, I can’t help but think how lucky I am, right now, in this moment I feel so content. I am feeling exhaustion coming on too, but what an experience it’s been the past few months. Which leads me to my topic for today. I was inspired while browsing on facebook and seeing one of my friend’s statuses which said:
“if you were to choose for a job: PASSION or PRACTICALITY? Passion- you will go for what you dream and what you want, Practicality- you will go for benefits because you know the reality?”
Firstly, it made me think can’t we have it all? Have a job that is practical and makes you happy? Sure there can be a lot of arguments presented for this question, but why not put a positive outlook on it? So this is what this article intends to do.
Secondly, it made me question, what we see as ‘reality’. Is it ‘reality’ to do things because others say that is the right thing to do? Is it ‘reality’ to do as society dictates? where you may end up doing something you have no inner motivation for and thus may end up like many other people stuck in a job 10 years from now that they hate, feeling unfulfilled, lack purpose in their lives and downright loss of self? Hasn’t there been a pattern too that says, if you keep following what someone else dictates it won’t ever truly work because it’s not you? Everyone is different, what might suit one person might not suit another person. One guy in the office really loves numbers, he LOVES being an accountant, while the guy two cubicles away might be in a totally different boat. That makes sense right? That’s an obvious comparison, we see it all the time in every workplace.
So what is ‘reality’, can’t passions become reality? I think sometimes people just choose out of fear and obligation which often leads to not being as successful in something as you could have been had you been passionate about it, if you have the opportunity you could take your passions to the next level because of just that, you have the passion to do it. When you just believe it’s reality, maybe you’re settling, of course you may take a pathway that doesn’t make sense, doing some things you don’t want to do, for some time you may do ‘reality’ to make your passions come alight. But I’ve met ‘brave’ people who went after their true passions, and they’re highly successful. Like anything passion takes effort, it’s not easy, there are ‘risks’ involved no matter what industry but ‘settling’ isn’t always the easiest thing to do either, you give up a lot of yourself and later on down the track you feel like what have I done? I think following ones passion is achievable and also important I know of a lady who has travelled all over the world as a travel writer, but looking at her history, you wouldn’t “expect” that of her as she had a degree in engineering and architecture but her true passion was travel and writing, it took time to get where she is now but she says she has no regrets, and I look at how happy AND successful she is now, and think this passion thing is just as important of a factor to consider when choosing your next job.
I think society sometimes dictates so much that it doesn’t let it you experience it yourself. We’re trained to believe mistakes make you a failure, but mistakes are part of the journey, we’re going to make them whatever choice we make, they help us form decisions later on and help us grow, help shape who you are today. There are some things that no matter how much advice other people can give you, you need to experience for yourself so you can really have an informed opinion about it. We’re all different, your experience might turn out much better than your friends experience. Sure there are other examples you could argue back, but so many could be just excuses. When you go deep within yourself a lot of those reasons that you can’t follow your passions, like I said before is rooted in fear and obligation. Now you could say, “but playing guitar won’t put food on the table Lari” or “But everyone in my family is a nurse so I should be too”. I never said you have to give up working a 9 to 5 job right now if that’s what you feel you have to do, but does that mean you should also give up playing guitar (example if that is your passion)? Like I said before passions or dreams or whatever you want to call it, maybe even your life calling, takes effort, can be done step by step, you might end up quitting that 9 to 5 later on. Just because you have a day job right now doesn’t mean you should put your passions on the backburner. You could go out and buy that guitar today, instead of using that money for eating out every night feeling satisfaction for about 30mins. And then in the next few days, practice playing guitar for even just an hour every night after work. You could then after a few weeks of getting more confident, look for opportunities where you could perform, maybe at your nearest cafe. It is that easy. Like I said step by step, when you identify what you want to do, or nurture your passions, you’ll see opportunities arise. They won’t arise if you keep saying “yeah it would be nice to play guitar but…” well for one you might not even own a guitar so how the heck is that going to help. Hey you might not become the next Santana, fame might even come later when other people recognize your talent and passion for your music but it’s not truly fame you’re after, it’s that inner peace you find when you stay true yourself and give that passion in your heart of yours a little bit of attention.
Everyone has a creative dream or passion of some sort, whether it be travelling, becoming a great public speaker, photography, event planning, writing a novel…they can still be nurtured.
You can grow them. While I can’t really say I’ve culminated my life dreams, I like to say I don’t put them on the back burner, I nurture them as part of who I am, as part of my spirit, I don’t hide from them, and while life sometimes can get “busy”, that is work/study/family/etc commitments, when you recall what it is YOU truly love, YOU feel more yourself, YOU live life with more meaning. And these aren’t just assumptions on my part, look around you or think of someone you know personally who has a job they love. I can think of a few. While they know there are some not so favorable parts that come with their job, be it sometimes long hours, or other compromises, they can say that they didn’t fall into the victim trap of being ‘forced’ into something they don’t truly don’t want to do. They have the confidence to say I can do what I want to do and be great at it. A lot easier to say than to do I’m sure, but I feel these people are brave. I look at one of my best friends, he has the brains and artistic flair to become a fantastic architect, however his passion is games. And while many people criticize him saying things like when are you going to get a ‘real’ job or “for real? games is a career? ” I am proud of him, because he is happy with himself, he loves his job, while the pay check is a fraction of what he ‘could’ be making, he ‘could’ also be miserable, anti-productive, stumping his creative flows. He will also I am sure reap the benefits of following his passion and probably get paid more later on in his career because he has genuine motivation to be the best in his industry, other than another guy who’s only motivation might be money, and this probably won’t stimulate creative designs like my friend can, because my friend truly LOVES designing.
Another note I’d like to make is what is a so-called ‘real’ job these days? The world is changing so much these days especially of course with technology. Look at the stats, it’s noted that the top 10 jobs in demand is 2010, didn’t even exist in 2004. And how about job change averages? According to the US Govt Labor Dept. people change jobs or careers on average of about 7 to 10 times in a lifetime. Whatever the average number of jobs or careers, one fact is certain: Most working people will make numerous career changes during their lifetime of employment. This is so thought provoking for me. If you were doing the same thing all the time, and looking for change, it wouldn’t happen because you’re doing exactly the same thing. How did so many inventions occur or new jobs get created? by innovative people who stepped out of the box and did what they loved or sometimes even by accident.
They are living the life they were meant to have, doing things that leave them feeling fulfilled, energized, excited…even happy!
You know it’s only been about a month and a bit since I started this blog, and while I am slowly growing, I’ve got some amazing feedback and met some fantastic people from all over the world. I’ve received emails from people with PAN from the United States, and letters from song writers in the UK. It’s unbelievable. I love sharing what I myself would like to learn more about and am so happy to hear the positive impact some of my blogs have had on people. It’s kind of funny, I sit writing out these blog posts out thinking ‘I wonder if anyone actually reads this stuff…’ haha but it doesn’t matter because I just love writing them. Some entries might not be as interesting to some as others, but it helps me get out my thoughts and even improve my writing. But truly, it is amazing, while I believe power to do things come from within, it’s always a wonderful feeling to hear positive feedback, even criticism, the kind that is actually constructive and I know will help me improve. I believe we can all grow each day and learn something new. Talk of dreams is something a lot of us avoid, something we believe are like fairytales, we all know about them but only few have the courage to take the step and go for them. I have many dreams, and while I know there are a lot of factors that contribute to influencing our choices with own dreams, such as family, financial circumstances, work/life balance, I do believe we shouldn’t let them hold them back completely. Instead of always putting our dreams on the back burner, like I said before step by step, there are little things you can decide to do right now to already kick start that dream of yours, putting out your intention and opening up opportunities that could help make your dreams even more closer to reach.
Ok so I’m preaching a lot here, and don’t worry I am still learning myself. It takes confidence and courage to do what you want to do, and I applaud those who have proven just how far you can go when you finally embrace them.