I notice a lot of people make the claim that they like their 9-5 job. Sometimes I even hear people say they love their office job .
I can’t help but to be a little skeptical of this.
Maybe there are certain enjoyable or interesting aspects to any given job.
But what about the fact that it anchors you to a specific physical location where you must return 5 days a week (despite knowing full well your job could be done remotely)? And the notion that you must still be present at your desk until a predetermined time even after you completed the day’s work efficiently by early afternoon?
How about the idea that you are at the mercy of whichever boss you get assigned to who is allowed to vent his frustrations onto you. But you must keep your own frustrations bottled up so he doesn’t give you a bad performance review for having a poor attitude.
Normally if a person were disrespectful towards you, you’d tell them to fuck off or just remove yourself from the negative person. But what if that person is a gatekeeper between you and 100% of your income? Suddenly his approval of you becomes very important.
And let’s not forget the false sense of security that bi-weekly paycheck provides. It keeps popping up in your account every other Friday. Isn’t that nice? Until one day it doesn’t because you got the axe when it came time to do a corporate “reorganization” of roles (somebody else decided your job wasn’t needed or could be done some other way).
Finally, how about the harsh reality that this hamster wheel keeps on spinning for 40+ years and you don’t get off this train until you’re old and grey?
So you see, while there are aspects you may like about your job – you are still working for somebody else. Which usually means that your job is embedded within an overarching system that for lack of a better phrase… fucking blows horse cock.
You are left with three options. You can change the system. You can accept and believe in the system. Or you can leave the system.
Since option 1 is often impossible, we naturally revert to option 2. When we can’t change something, we change the way we think about it. We accept what we cannot change and we embrace it so that we don’t drown in negativity and hopelessness. Optimism is a survival mechanism so that we don’t give up even when we’re in a shitty situation we can’t change.
I think this is what’s happening when people say, “I love my job!” as they sit in their grey cubicle while yet another beautiful day is passing by outside.
We believe there is no way out. So we resort to all kinds of mental gymnastics to make ourselves believe that we actually love the banality of office life. We start thinking about all the starving kids in Africa to make ourselves feel better. We remember that documentary where we saw homeless people shitting in the streets. We think about that middle-aged man we saw working a job that is usually filled by teenagers.
But what about comparing our lives to the rock star? The billionaire CEO? The President? It’s often too painful to do this because of the envy it evokes. We want what they have. But we think it’s impossible to get. So we believe in a “more realistic” life. And that is our mistake.
We must not forget option #3. Leave the system. We must acknowledge that while tinkering around in spreadsheets for $60,000 a year is better than digging ditches for $10 an hour, we can still do better.
Stop lying to yourself that you love your job when there is a whole world out you can captivate by creating content on the internet.
Find your real passion in life by asking this question: If you won a billion dollar lottery tomorrow, would you quit the work that you do? If the answer is yes then the work is not your passion.
If a billion dollars fell into my lap tomorrow, I would eagerly put in my two weeks notice at the day job – but this blog would continue posting twice a week.
Why is it that the rockstars of the Rolling Stones are still performing and touring the world even though they are in their 70s and have more money than they could ever want? Because their work is their passion. Mick Jagger is going to die on that stage mid-song as he struts around like a rooster because that is what he was born to do and it’s what he’ll die doing.
Why is it that the Billionaire CEO, Elon Musk pursues space travel in spite of it being a risky business venture with massive costs?
What salary did Donald Trump take for his role as President of The United States? $1 a year. That’s because he’s doing it for the passion not the money (and maybe a little for legacy and ego too but you get my point).
Life is too short to trick yourself into thinking you love your job. Accept it for what it is and find your real passion in life.