I fucking love writing this weekly journal.
Because I get to talk to people about real stuff that matters to both them and I on a personal level.
On the front page of my personal website, I have a subscription form to opt in to receive this journal — on it, I ask new subscribers a simple question:
"What's the number 1 career question you have on your mind right now?"
The answers to this question give me prompts and ideas for article topics — a simple way of learning what readers actually want to read.
One answer has been sitting on a post-it note on my desk since January — I've been looking at it and dwelling on the profound nature of it and today I'd like to answer it.
"I am fully present, dedicated and have given my best talents to my employer. I don't feel financially abundant. How do I generate a higher income in the next 5 years?"
On the surface, you can easily assume that this question is about making money fast — in some way it is. There's a finite timeline and a very specific need:
- 5 years
- higher income
I see so much more in this question.
This person is 'fully present' and 'dedicated.' Giving their best talents to their employer and not feeling financially abundant.
To me, it's a quiet cry for help. This person loves their job, the people are lovely, kind and the days go by with a good mix of great jobs, fun jobs and jobs that simply need to be done. There are bad days and there are good days — albeit this person is happy.
When this person looks at their age, the time they've spent in their job, their life goals, things just don't add up.
And the answer isn't one that is as easy to digest as is the idea of biding their time until something better comes along.
I've had moments in my career where I've felt like I was giving my all and fully present in the role I was performing, in the jobs I was paid to do. Until I realised that within that sentence was the answers.
I was paid to do a job.
I was paid to do a job, for someone else.
I was helping someone else work towards their dreams — and I was of the belief that I was also working towards my own. In essences, I was, but the velocity at which I was travelling towards my own personal goals, could've been greater.
I realised that my employer was benefiting by employing me, more so than I was benefiting by being employed by them.
They held the puppet strings. They also held the purse strings. They dictated how fast I was going to travel (on my Chariot) towards my goals and even though they would sometimes say that 'we were in this together'. I knew that was a little bit of bullshit they served me on a platter to keep me in line, and make them feel good about themselves.
So I made a changes.
I left to pursue my own goals.
On my own terms — at my own pace.
In my own way.
Some changes didn't work out. Some did.
Albeit, they moved me towards my truth.
Not somebody else's.