I had a great day. Thoroughly productive. I created an animation for our women’s conference, and did lots of administrating of a web type nature. Great fun.
I got to thinking about being satisfied with life where it pertains to work.
Work is a great thing – but I look at some of my friends who are in jobs they can’t stand and I wonder what is so hard about being happy at work? Sometimes what I see my friends going through makes me feel far from normal.
I love my work and have done for years, regardless of what I was doing. It hasn’t always been that way, it was 9 years before I found out what I was good at and I set my sail towards it (it was customer service at that stage). Since then, in the whole work zone I consistently have set my faith towards a great work life and haven’t yet failed to cruise into the same satisfying slipstream.
Work is such a major part of life. Without it we go hungry or homeless at worst, or at the very best without lattes and restaurant dinners. We stay where we hate to be rather than face the insecurity of not having work. We stay because we have become so discouraged that we honestly begin to believe that the only reason we haven’t got something better is that we actually don’t deserve to have it. That’s tragic. (Public Service Announcement: For goodness sake, please don’t resign from your job just because of this paragraph…)
It is possible to have a job that satisfies. It is possible to have a job that is uniquely suited to your skills and gifts and talents and dreams. It all comes down to what you believe about yourself and what you are prepared to put in to get it. And if, like me, you have the added dimension of faith in a God who is as passionately interested in your own life as you are, it seems to me that there is very little that can stand in your way.
Now don’t get me wrong. There have been great jobs and c*rap ones in my 18 years (half my life actually) in the work place and each job I have been in has had it’s cr*p moments. But each has made it’s contribution to my skill set and the character I have now which has made me an asset to an employer. But I think my biggest asset is my faith in myself, a faith born out of faith in God and the value I know I have in Him. Because I know my value I am not overawed by those who I meet or those whom I serve, I know what I can do and I know what I am worth. I think because I know that I can be in command of my work life. I can choose to seek out the bigger wage packet or I can settle for less in favour of conditions that suit or the freedom to take ministry opportunities as well. The sky is only limit really…
I wish I could give other people that confidence. Still if I had a list of things I would suggest it would go something like this.
1. Take the time and money to meet with a careers counselor, a proper one who can gather the right information from you and match you to a list of fields that would suit you… I have done this twice in my years in the workplace the results were spot on and very helpful.
2. Read “What Color is your Parachute?” and start looking for work based on what you can offer and what you are good at and what will challenge you rather than trying to fit yourself to what an employer thinks he is looking for…
3. Don’t let work be your life. Have a life outside of the office (or wherever).
4. Don’t let work dictate how you feel about yourself.
5. If you have a dream, that maybe you have discredited or discounted because you honestly didn’t believe you could make it happen, pull it out, dust it off and start to imagine what life would be like if you actually did make it happen… Now… stop imagining and make a plan… Don’t expect it to happen tomorrow… take a little step today and another… and another… well, you get the idea…