Happiness is, however, a job. It isn’t the magic reward at the end of the rainbow that I can someday achieve, with hard work, perseverance and a whole lot of luck.
In my goal to better understand the next step in life without unemployment benefits, I begin to unravel and widen the spectrum of what my next job will be. Perhaps that isn’t the exact term I should use as I don’t ever want the pressure and stress of my previous employment/job. So the key is to apply for happiness and find the means to support whatever that entails. Promoting oneself is fundamental to everything in life. If you are an organic farmer, no matter how off the grid, chances are you are promoting/competing at the local farmer’s markets. Celebrities promote themselves. Well let’s just say “Life-styles Of the Rich and Famous” probably helped to launch a few careers or refreshed a few that were struggling. If nothing else, the effort allows each of those people to live their lives the way they choose. It may not be my choice or yours, but they made it and are sustaining themselves.
So what if everyone could reach that sort of lightness? What is the balance between promotion for how you want to live your life, (depending on how much you are giving back to make life better for others) and sustainability without greed?
Many years ago I sold $2.00 accident and disability insurance policies door-to-door to farmers in southern Illinois. I worked for the Combined Insurance Company of America. The founder of that company, W. Clement Stone, was one of America’s successful “Rags to Riches” stories. He went from abject poverty to a millionaire philanthropist, who also authored several popular “Self Help” books in his day.
One of W. Clement Stone’s quotes comes to mind: “Tell everyone what you want to do and someone will want to help you do it.” What if you are doing what you want and the telling part is finding a way to move it to the next level, sustainability? You dig in harder to the promotion department archives and see where your talents are transferable to some form totally different form of employment. I ask myself, “What is it that I would like to do for the next however many years?” And the answer keeps coming back – this. If, as Eckhart Tolle says, I need only let go of the concept of the future being my salvation with fulfillment and satisfaction, I can put all those resources into right now and sustain my current life.
But oh, how dull! Isn’t life about change? Didn’t I just write that the other day?
Somehow I have gotten off topic. The hunt for happiness in a job listing is fraught with wrong turns. I circle back to “looks good but the commute would be a killer,” or “sounds interesting but will I still have time to write?” Surely there are folks out there with jobs they love; employment that doesn’t take over every other aspect of their lives. At this stage of life I’m not afraid of failure, I’m more anxious about losing what I have gained in the past year of living creatively.