"Love what you do! And if you don't? Find something you can love about it and focus in on it to drive you from day to day."
I remember having a job in a gas meter factory when I was in college that I loved.
Let me rephrase that. I didn't love the job, but I loved what the job provided.
1. It provided me with a great income over the span of four summers.
2. It provided me with the determination to get my college degree, because I didn't want to work in a factory for my full-time job.
3. It provided stable jobs for several members of my family including both my parents, both my step-parents, my grandma, one of my uncles, and one of my cousins.
4. It provided me with an appreciation for what it really meant to work hard.
5. It provided me many lessons in humility when my supervisors laughed at "the college kid" who was a slow learner.
6. It provided me with the pride I still have in my hometown even though I haven't lived there in almost 17 years, because that factory provided jobs to people who are the backbone of it.
7. It provided me with admiration for the people who have given a majority of their lives to working of 20-30+ years in the same place. That just doesn't happen very often.
What I learned from my summer job all those years ago drives me today. That experience was the foundation for who I am today. The funny thing is, I never really thought much about it until I hit an obstacle in my current career. I was struggling to find what I loved about my current career, and I just stared at a blank piece of paper.
Yet, I could easily write down several things I loved about my college summer job. I think part of it has to do with perspective. When we're in the middle of something, it's hard to pick out what we love. It's easier to reflect upon something with more fondness and appreciation that happened so many years ago.
The challenge is to take a step back in our current situation and ask some questions:
1. If it isn't a job I love, what can I find in it that I do love?
2. How has this job shaped who I am?
3. What do I bring to the table daily?
4. If I suddenly lost this job, what would I miss the most?
Taking that step back can give us the focus we need to drive our day.
It can, quite simply, help us fall in love with what we do, or at the very least remind us why we're doing it in the first place.
I'm a lover of life, an eternal optimist, and I have an intense desire to add value through simple living and positive vibes.