From John Mackey’s Conscious Capitalism he sums up what the vast majority of people are looking for when it coming to work.
A job, a career, or a calling.
We’ve all had a job. We’ve all hated a job.
A job is what we first want when we’re young. Mostly for means to an ends. We want cash money. We treat the job as such, we don’t get too attached, we try to do just a good enough job not to get fired. There are many people in this world that simply work at a job. It’s not fulfilling, they don’t love the organization they work for, and when another “job” comes along that seems similar but pays better, they’re gone fast than you can say “do you want fries with that?”
A career is a little different. Like a longer, well-paid boring job.
A career is something you work towards. A career will help you provide for your family, give you a future, and give you a little confidence because you now have self worth, you’re a career person after all! Careers are mostly a thing of the past. A risky move by companies offering lucrative salaries has been replaced by contract work that corporations can hire out when they need it. Remember, companies want to make money, they don’t intrinsically want to pay you a “good” salary for your work, not at career places. Companies have a vested interest in paying people less over time, it’s the only way to grow in a world where sales will eventually run out.
Careers aren’t growing in numbers. The generation coming up doesn’t want to stay at the same place for 30 years, changing careers seems to be the norm. So don’t fall in love with your occupation, just do it enough to get that retirement savings you’re entitled to after all those years of service.
Being a career person isn’t bad, it’s great! But it does come with some unintended consequences. 15 to 20 years in climbing your corporate totem pole you’re going to have the ” I hate this” years. We’ve all talked to a baby boomer who hates their job. They hate it but that’s followed up with a “but I’ve maxed out my pay scale so they have to keep paying me this ungodly amount until I retire!!”.
How much is a miserable life worth to you?
What kind of existence is that? You hold on to a career you hate just to make money? That sucks, don’t get into that rut because when you’re young it’s easy to change jobs and find something else to do. When you’re 55 or 65 it’ll be much more difficult.
This is what a lot of developed nations are going through, what does the older generation do? These career people don’t have the technical background the young generation has but they demand jobs, what do you want them to do?
Think if you work your career for a couple decades then one day your industry is gone? It happened to farmers, record stompers, Blockbuster employees, assembly line workers, factory workers, and is about to happen to another large portion of the population. Don’t fall into this trap, there’s more to life than a career.
Don’t let a lucrative “career” fool you, life’s far more enjoyable once you find your calling.
We all should strive to find out what our calling is.
At the intersection of what you’re good at, what you can make money at, and what you love to do, is your calling. Call it world domination, a secret only a few figure out. But finding your calling isn’t something that should be left to chance.
Forget a job or career, focus on your calling. What could you do endlessly everyday? What work do you do when everything else just slips away and you enter into this hyper focused work mode? That moment of flow? You know, when nothing else matters but the task at hand?
Seek out your calling. Don’t just “work”, add some of your art to your work. Do tasks with personality. Develop your way of doing things (just make sure it’s inclusive). Finding your calling takes time, it takes focus, maturity and grit.
I say grit because you have to want something out of life, you have to be able to fight for something in life. Nothing worth having in life is easy, choose the hard way, choose to follow your calling.
What’s Your Calling?
First things first you have to believe you have a calling otherwise you’re just like everyone else that doesn’t believe they are special.