What Are You Working For?

This is the beginning of what I hope is a long and successful journey for me – a change in direction career-wise.  I’m throwing away the phrase “It looks good on a resumé” because I really hope I never have to look for another “job” again.  Last week, on the same day that I received a promotion (in title and responsibility only) at my 9 to 5, I took delivery of the first 500 copies of my first book.  I also worked with a friend to finalize the details of my web site, enabling the sale of the book through the site, and sent out numerous emails to local vendors about the book.  I sent a message to every one of my Facebook friends.  From this point on, I’m hoping to do something each and every day to forward the growth of this book and my company, Nectar Media (nectar.us.com).

Nectar Media LogoAt some point in early 2008, I grew tired of business as usual at my job of 5+ years.  Aware of the fact that many of my friends were out of work or stuck in a much less tolerable job, I realized that I had to start working toward something better.  I asked myself, “What are you working for?”  The answer, as it is for many people, was “a paycheck”.  That is really sad.  I don’t believe that’s the way God intended it to be.  Work is a necessary thing, but it should be satisfying.  At the end of the day, you should feel as if you have accomplished something.   There should be at least a small amount of pride in what you do.  You should not have to do or say anything that is out of character for you as a person.  You should not feel trapped.  And yet, so many are.  I believe it was Harvey Mackay who said, “Find something you love to do, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.”.  Wise, wise words.

So I asked myself again, as I have done several times in my life, “What do you want to do?”.  It’s the adult version of “What do you want to be when you grow up?”  Add to this the identity question of “Who am I?”  For most of my life I would have answered that question with something musical – a singer, a pianist, a songwriter.  Several years ago, for various reasons, I pretty much hung up the music.  I needed a break, and I had finally found someone who loved me for the person I am, and not for the song I could write for them or the star I might (in theory) become.  The several years since have been some of the happiest of my life, but once I began to search for a professional identity I began to sense that the writer part of songwriter was still in me.  Now I had the answer to the big question:  I want to write.

Facebook actually helped feed this desire.  I love coming up with short little sayings or thoughts for my status that get a response out of people.  I gradually started keeping track of the good ones, and added in some other things I’d written in the past (song titles/lyrics, etc.).  The hope is that those and the “Deep Thoughts from a Shallow Mind” posted here will become a book of their own down the road.

In fact, it’s not only writing that I love.  It’s being creative in general.  I think that was always my favorite part of writing a song – creating something from scratch that could move a listener to tears.  I deeply enjoy graphic design as well, and have taught myself to do quite a bit of it over the years.  I have friends who do design for a living, and I would never claim to “be a graphic designer”.  All I know is that when I’m working on either a writing or a design project, I often find that hours have passed in the blink of an eye.  Every time this happens, I wish there were more hours in the day because I don’t want to stop working on that project.  Imagine getting paid to do something you could spend 8 hours a day working on and still wish you could keep on working.

So here I am, a writer, still a slave to the man but finding time to move forward with what I really want to do too.  I am working, in both jobs, for the common goal of writing for a living.  My “day job” pays the bills, and recent developments may allow me to have slightly more control over being proud of what I do.  What am I working for?  My hope is that by this time next year, I will be able to answer that question in a different way…  to entertain… to make a difference… to share the creativity God has given me with the world… to make my children proud… to make people smile or laugh… because it’s fun.  Heaven forbid you actually enjoy what you do every day.  Precious few people can say that.

What are you working for?

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~ by suitenectar on January 31, 2010.

One Response to “What Are You Working For?”

  1. Thank you for sharing this very timely message. I hope your new “Goodnight…” project is very successful. It’s great to see it out there!

    Craig

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