02 Jun Try Creating The Life You Want
This article might differ from what many people in the personal development industry say, but I think it could help a few people that are caught up on a romantic idea that in some cases, does more harm than good.
It’s the idea that we each have one thing that we were born to do, our calling, our purpose, the reason why we were put here on this earth, and one day it’s going to magically fall into our lap and we can be happy doing it for the rest of our lives.
Some people spend all their lives waiting for this one thing that’s going to ignite their flame, but they’re hoping for a fairytale scenario which for most people is just not going to happen.
I think the premise of the idea is pretty awesome. Think about it, who wouldn’t want to find that one thing that they were born to do, something you love, something that gives you a sense of purpose that you can be happy doing for the rest of your life.
Unfortunately, that’s not exactly how it works for most people and the reality is slightly different.
Even when people do figure out their calling, it doesn’t mean they have to stop working hard, they’ve just found something they enjoy working hard on.
I believe that’s all a calling is, when something you enjoy doing and you’re passionate about aligns with an opportunity that you’re happy to do for an extended period of time.
I’m not trying to dismiss the idea of us each having a calling at all, I just think for some people it could be beneficial to look at it differently.
We’re exposed to so many different opportunities and pathways we can go down – all the barriers have been broken down. We can study whatever we want, learn whatever skills we want, build whatever businesses we want. We have all the information in the world at our fingertips.
We don’t have to wait to find our calling anymore, we have the ability to create it ourselves.
“What a time, to be alive”
Unfortunately, even though we live in such a time where we each hold the power to create opportunities that align with our own passions, we still stay in jobs and situations that make us miserable.
We put up with being unsatisfied because we know exactly what we can expect if we don’t venture too far outside our comfort zone.
We stay in mundane jobs because we know the money, the people, the routine, the workplace and that gives a feeling of comfort even if we don’t enjoy it. We end up settling for known misery over unknown possibility.
People love the idea that someday, they’ll leave that job or situation and pursue what they really want once they figure out what their calling is. In the meantime, they take comfort in the hope that this will all happen in the near future.
A lot of us don’t want to jump into anything yet because we aren’t 100% sure if we should do it or not. We’re scared of the thought that it might not work out and we’ve wasted all this time and money.
But that’s the problem, we will never figure out what our calling is while standing still, we have to keep moving and take action.
We have to jump into things to figure it out and we have to have faith that no matter what, it will all align in the future. Steve Jobs talked about this in his 2005 Stanford Commencement Address (if you haven’t listened to the speech I highly recommend it):
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. Because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart even when it leads you off the well-worn path; and that will make all the difference.”
– Steve Jobs
Just because you haven’t figured it out yet, doesn’t mean you won’t. If things don’t work out, they’re not a waste of time, they’re a stepping stone to something else and there is zero point in looking at in any other way.
I quit my job to coach American Football in the states because I thought that was my calling. I never waited to be offered the position, I knew that if it was to be, it was up to me so I went and made it happen.
Even though I realised that it wasn’t my calling, it was still the best decision I’ve ever made and I would do it again in a heartbeat because now I’m never going to wonder if.
It got me one step closer to figuring it all out and led me to something even bigger. I would never be doing what I am today if I didn’t take that leap of faith.
You’ll never know if something is your calling or not by sitting and waiting – nothing will ever change and there will never be a perfect time to pursue it.
If you aren’t satisfied with your job or the situation you’re in, ask yourself – am I doing everything I can to figure out what I really want and how to get there?
If you have the audacity to complain about your job/situation, you better be willing to actually do something thing about it.
It’s too easy to make excuses like it’s too hard, I can’t make money doing that or I don’t know what I want to do or what I’m passionate about.
What you’re basically saying is “I enjoy doing X, but I would have to really work my ass off for it which I can’t actually be bothered doing, so I’ll stay in my comfort zone and complain”.
“The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they can’t find them, make them.”
– George Bernard Shaw
I’m a firm believer that no matter what it is, if you make the decision to pursue what you love, you’ll find a way to make money doing that very thing. Things will fall into place and if you really want to turn it into a living, you will.
However, it doesn’t have to involve money, it’s about going after what you want in life no matter what. You’ll never be truly satisfied until you pursue what’s true to you.
No one’s going to just hand you this awesome job/life that you’re super passionate about and completely satisfied with – you have to make it happen. Don’t wait to find your calling, create it.