and the job search begins…

We have been in New York for the past week and I have to admit, I’m really glad to be home. It’s a nice place to visit, but there are definitely a few things I really dislike, such as lots of people, lots of noise, being crowded everywhere, and everything is really expensive. I like the slower pace of the Midwest. I like my smallish city. I like not having to listen to car horns honk at all hours and constantly hearing sirens of some kind or deal with oodles of herpaderp tourists and I really like some peace and quiet. Of course, there are no Broadway theatres here or carriage rides or really tall buildings (some of the cooler things), but I can also walk down the street and not be asked by 14 different people if I want to rent a bike or take a carriage ride. I like being home.

Of course, being home means that The Job Search begins. I was fretting about it quite a bit on Saturday, our last day in New York, because I’m rather apprehensive about starting. Right now, I’m not sure where I want to work or what I want to do. We were talking about it a little and I said “I just don’t know what I want to do with my life” and James replied with something rather profound. He said “I do. You want to be a good wife, you want to be a good mother, and someday, you want to be a respected professional.”

It really got me thinking. When did “What do I want to do with my life?” become “What job do I want to work or what career do I want to have until either I retire or change my mind?” When did “What do I want to do with my life?” become all about working? There are MANY things I can do with my life and work is only ONE of them. Heck, a SMALL one at that. I do want to be a good wife and someday mom, I want to be a good friend, a faithful Christian. I want to be reliable and dependable. I want to be a marathoner (I think, we’ll see how I feel about that after my first marathon) and someday, I’d like to try an ultra-marathon (that’s 100 miles, folks). I want to be a good dog-owner and a faithful Red Wings fan. I want to be a consistent volunteer at my church and even other places, too.

I think that in our culture, work has become too important. I forget that work is what you do so that you can do what you want when you’re not at work. I often believe that work HAS to be enjoyable, something that I’ll look forward to doing every day and something that fulfills me on some level. Work is WORK, it’s not meant to be fun, it’s not synonymous with fun. I can be fulfilled in so many other areas of my life that work really is just something that brings home a little paycheck that helps us to do as we wish. Having it be a really great and fulfilling job would be a perk, but I can make it a requirement.

I’m not going to lie, this new perspective doesn’t make The Job Search any less scary, but it does take off some of the pressure of finding a REALLY great job that I will LOVE and that will FULFILL me. I just have to remember what its purpose is and I have to remember to keep it in the right spot on my list of priorities. It has to be important enough to do well, but not so important that it consumes my life.

what is your perspective on working and jobs?

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2 thoughts on “and the job search begins…

  1. courtney says:

    my job is not AT ALL my dream job… it fell into my lap and i think god is the one who threw it there, because honestly, i overlooked this company PURPOSELY early on in my job search. i ended up working here anyway. and it’s not glamorous. it’s not that exciting to tell people about. but i’m also doing a lot less worrying about money and health and all the other responsibilities in life that i have the time and energy and means to go out and do the things i love to do and spend time with people i want to spend time with. i by no means think anyone’s job should make them miserable. i think we SHOULD enjoy our jobs, because we spend SO much of our lives working. you should expect to be happy where you work… and ANY vocation can glorify god. but you’re right… you still need to have the right perspective about it. work isn’t EVERYTHING. it’s only a small part of the picture. and when we don’t expect work and work alone to make us the people we want to be, we’re much better off.

  2. kim says:

    When I was going through my whole existential crisis about being a lawyer, I had this same set of thoughts. It was The Mister who had to tell me, much like James told you, that work is not supposed to be fun. I get where he’s coming from and I can understand now that work cannot be what fulfills you in life.

    But…

    That doesn’t mean you should settle for something you hate. Start with the types of volunteer work you’d like to do if money were no issue and think about the things that you would most like to do and then think about some things that you wouldn’t mind doing, but aren’t at the top of your list. Then make a clear line between those things and the things you’d never want to do. And do not settle for anything in that second category. Because you will be absolutely miserable.

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