Are You Selling Yourself Short? ~ Amy Goldberg

James Altucher recently posted on his LinkedIn Newsletter; The James Altucher Idea List the ‘idea’ that many jobs, not all, are simply human domestication programs. Let’s think about that for a second; Human domestication programs. It sounds like a futuristic movie.

To illustrate his point Altucher created an interesting visual (below) that has him comparing; Work vs Prison. If that’s not a wake-up call, I don’t know what is. Unless of course you’re ridiculously happy at what you’re doing.

Perhaps, and likely for a lot of people, work has in fact crumbled beneath your feet, in which case, wouldn’t this be an opportune time to re-evaluate what it is that you really want to be doing?

As one that has studied the way in which people work and engage since the 80’s, the idea that we still have cubicles, forced structure, and siloed thinking baffles me – and it’s unproductive. I’m speaking broadly of course. Not all companies fit into this picture. Thankfully.

There must be a happier way to earn a buck. I’ve certainly been diligent about it. It does seem to need constant dialogue around how best to engage with our fellow human beings in the work environment. And even then, the number one ‘complaint’ I hear from leaders and HR management is; “I don’t like managing people.” Well here’s your first clue. Don’t call it managing people. What are we cattle?

Fear is certainly still, to this day, a factor that holds us back from innovating. The fear of losing our jobs. Well, we all know, THAT can happen at any time.

The workplace cultures that have been created seem, for a lot of companies, to be an afterthought. In fact, suffice it to say, not created, rather, fallen into.

If this pandemic has taught us anything, it’s to have us reassess where, in fact we are in our lives right now, and ask ourselves – “What matters to me?” or, you may be thinking; ” What are you talking about? I lost or was laid off my job, my business folded, I’m destroyed. I’ll take anything to make ends meet.”

“To make ends meet,” means that no matter what you’re doing, you need to do it fast. I get it and yet why wouldn’t you put the same amount of effort into something that you actually want to be doing?

In fact, rather than think that you need to be doing one thing (putting all of your eggs into one basket) focus on a number of things within the area that motivates you and go do that!

Altucher noted in the same article that “…. the average multi-millionaire has seven different sources of income. A job is just ONE. And, by the way, being an entrepreneur is just one. The key is to try many things.” 

Hey, look, unless you’re immune, COVID 19 has thrown us for a loop. Who would have thought, apart from scientists and infectious disease experts that warned us years prior that this was coming (it fell on deaf ears), that we’d be compromised? Not only compromised but locked-in, and locked-down for months. Our livelihoods, for millions of people, took a massive hit.

If ever we needed strength and resiliency, now is the time. And it’s on steroids.

Start to write down ideas. Ideas of what you think you might like to be doing. If you’re stumped that’s ok, just start writing. Use that creative brain muscle. It will get stronger as you use it. At first you may be staring at a blank piece of paper for a while. Keep staring until you put pen to paper and get some ideas down.

A friend of mine is a Class A Welder. He can weld anything. He started welding because he saw that those close to him were all welders. It’s very common to fall into fields of those close to you. Welding paid the bills, and he is great at it, and yet would rather be doing anything other than weld. My friend is also an incredible artist, and yet couldn’t see how he could raise a family and pay the bills from the arts (we all know how tough that can be). And yet years past and he kept welding while he worked on his creative aspirations. Diligent and relentless he honed his craft. It took decades for him to realize that he could do other things to earn a buck and be more satisfied. His mindset was locked on; “I only know how to weld for a living.” It wasn’t until he realized that he was truly a ‘creative.’ His welding was just one aspect of his creativity. Fast forward, he started writing down ideas. Every day. Not only did he realize that he could be doing what he loved, but his confidence grew, and his mindset shifted where he wasn’t convinced that he could only do one thing as a career. Of course, years earlier it seemed foreign to him because truly, you only know what you know.

Every one of us has the ability and opportunity for more. – Ron Garan.

Let’s choose US. Let’s find ways to lead a life that inspires us. That gives us the experiences that we need to flourish. To thrive. We know very well that if you’ve ever been in, or are in, survival mode it is incredibly stressful, depressing, exhausting, fearful with a feeling of hopelessness.

Make YOU a priority and take the time to explore all the opportunities that lend themselves to who you are, and what you want to be doing.

Reach out if you’re stuck. Together we’re better isn’t a slogan. It’s a mindset that you need to adopt.