Do you want a Job to earn a living, or Work you Love to Do?

Most of us, I believe, want work we love to do, and some have happily found that in the job they have to earn money.  But many of us are stuck in work we aren’t fond of, or in some way want to be different, but haven’t found the right formula to make it happen.  Yet.

My passion is to guide individuals to the work they love to do – that which they are passionate about, are skilled at, and from which they find a great deal of satisfaction by contributing their talents to others.  Which I call “living their purpose.”

There are many reasons why many of us experience this dilemma, but the primary one is this: we typically haven’t been properly trained and conditioned to feel our heartfelt desires from a young age, and have unknowingly followed in the footsteps of those parents, teachers, or adults we patterned our lives after.  That pattern is simply this:

  • We are each separate and need a job to survive
  • The way to get a job is to first look for it in the marketplace
  • Then send out a good resume and thoughtfully answer questions when asked

This method is one way, and works some of the time. But, what typically happens is this: the person using this method often ends up in a job that they maybe can do, but which doesn’t really match who they really are or what they really want to do.  I call this living from a “conditioned self,” dependant on others to provide the income to survive or thrive in the world of things we think will make us happy.

Yes, there is another way.

Our typical language now references two ways from which we see, choose, and experience life.  Most assuredly you are now familiar with two domains: left brain-right brain thinking, head and heart, thinking and feeling, planned and spontaneous, etc.  And, it has been determined, our personality has preferences from which domain we operate.  In addition to others, I use another term to describe how we navigate the world: inner and outer.

I suspect many of us see the job search process and the work we are engaged in as mainly from the orientation of being in the “outer” domain.  After all, we get up in the morning, and go outside to wherever we work, do a job, then go home.  (OK, some of us also go to the computer in the next room as well.)  But usually we think of jobs as being separate from us, and something we have to “get” even before we get to go there.  We live in the world of “separation” and things, and go after them (especially when we are missing having them) in order to get satisfaction and pleasure.  Unfortunately, this method either works for a short time, or doesn’t work, both leaving us unhappy (until we see something else that is missing and go after that)!

The alternative?  Start with the Inner Game of Work, as I call it, to more quickly and happily wind up with the Outer Game of Work – the work we love to do.

You have undoubtedly experienced or seen great athletes operate amazingly well and as being “in the flow,” when they are not thinking, but merely responding to the situation.  It is amazing to watch, and better yet, to experience for ourselves.  The job search process can become that way!  And here’s what it takes:

Start with the Inner:

  • Discover and honor the truth about who you are (Socrates: “know thyself”); that is, in essence a unique expression of Spirit operating through you
  • Combine the factors of skills, passions, and calling, and come up with your “life purpose”
  • Formulate this into your vision, that is energized by a burning desire and fueled by your determination to achieve what you want
  • Assess both where you are, and what looks on the outside as a good match
  • Notice the gap, and devise an initial plan to work from (which can change at any time when new insights are gained)

Now the Outer:

  • Take (bold and courageous!) action in the present moment, responding to insights and ideas that “come to you” (which I call intuition – our channel to Spirit)
  • Understand the outer dimensions of job search strategies, and become skilled in developing them (resumes, researching, identifying, and most of all communicating your value, strengths and passions to those you talk to)

Back to the Inner:

As often happens, our minds come into play (even when we think we have a handle on them) and provide us with unwanted messages about how things are going.  When this happens, we usually need someone to talk to, to separate the truth from the emotional belief we might think is real.  Negative emotional beliefs can take us off track, slow us down, and worst yet, paralyze us.  We can even lose confidence, and feel worthless as a result!  Our good and trusted friends can help us separate out what’s real and what we make up, as our beliefs often tend to do.  Then, we can return to our commitments, remember our passions and purpose, and head back on the moment-to-moment trail of job search success.

When we are operating in the present moment, we naturally align with a greater amount of our power that is aligned with Spirit.  And, what we hold in mind, we attract on the outside.  When we are thinking positive thoughts, we attract positive outcomes.  When we think negative thoughts, we attract negative outcomes.  Or, as Mike Dooley says, “thoughts become things.”  Another saying: “change your thinking, and change your life.”

Additionally, when we are thinking about the past or future, we lose true consciousness and the ability to make good decisions, because we are thinking from the domain of lack (separation) rather than abundance.  There is nothing wrong in doing this, however; it’s just that we have been taught this is the best way to go.  For example, my parents wrongly trained me to think that security was based on how much money one made, so suggested I become a doctor or engineer, neither of which had any alignment with my authentic inner self.  Had I followed either of those paths, I would be miserably miserable, and be doing no good to myself or anyone around me.  Fortunately, a college course provided the spark from which I was able to extricate myself from this parental guidance.

To easily remember the best way to go with all this, go from Inner to Outer, or BE (your authentic self) first, then DO, then Receive; rather than look for that which you want to HAVE, then DO, then BE (a “conditioned” self), for the latter will wind you up smack dab in the middle of a job you don’t want to have.  Short version: BE-DO-HAVE rather than HAVE-DO-BE.


About Jim

Jim’s innovative and influential style of coaching and facilitation stems from over 15 years of Management experience in Human Resource and Organization Development. He has written two books, and has coached others in the area of Personal Development for the past 20 years.