i’m not sure quite where this happened, but my thinking has gotten older. some would say matured. when or where this happened isn’t obvious. it didn’t happen overnight. but it did happen.
what is this “older thinking”? well, it is a less idealistic, much more pragmatic. it has to do with my attitude towards work and life and love. but primarily work. my expectations of the work-world are that it will be a slog, a fight, that it will never be what it should be. “do your job, keep your nose down, get it done” but not to expect it to be all roses because “it is a job. if you loved it, it wouldn’t be work.”
this attitude runs counter to my experience and my job when i was much younger. but now that i am a bit older i think—maybe it wasnt the job. maybe it was just me, and my idealism, and love of work, that got me through that situation. i wonder if, given the same situation, how i would be do now–with my “older thinking” in place.
a discussion over the weekend–is it truly possible to find a job that you love? the conclusion was “no, that is why it is called work”. a bit depressing, but probably true. a columnist from the financial times was quoted, in response to complaints about “lack of meaning in work”, that being able to feed your family is reason enough to work, and should provide satisfaction. we are so far up Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy that our concerns about self-fullfillment in our work is a bit ludicrous in comparison to the vast numbers of people in the world who suffer.
still–we have these concerns, and we have to live our own lives. i wonder if a re-reading of alain de botton here might not do me some good. i know that i have some dissatisfaction with where i am, career-wise, and am trying to sort that out.
i am not particularly happy with the idea that i just need to settle for a job that will support my family. i would like to think i could do better. but i look around, even at my most successful friends, and i do not see much self-fulfillment in work.
for the moment, i will leave this question open.