The desire to find fulfillment at work, or a job that provides a real sense of purpose and that reflects our values and personality, is an invention of modernity.
Yes, all the moves you’ve seen in alignment with “Doing what you love”, “Live your purpose” and to that inner voice that insists on picking on you saying it’s not right to spend eight hours a day doing worksheets are far from understanding of your grandmother and even your mother.
To give you an idea, at the Samuel Johnson dictionary published in 1775 the word fulfillment (in Portuguese: achievement, satisfaction) doesn’t even appear. During many centuries, most people were busy struggling to meet their basic subsistence needs, praying to get rid of pests and diseases and recovering from the scars of war. There was no time and even context for thinking in a stimulating work, at the same time bring money, pleasure and fulfilment.
Fortunately time passed, science has advanced to the point that the fear of pests and diseases no longer terrorizes us as much as before, our generation and previous generations has healed the scars left by the war and the spread of material prosperity freed our minds basic concerns, hopefully causing much of the adventure of life!
Maslow had already warned us: our needs change as we supply those that are urgent. We walk to the top of the pyramid always looking for something to fill in: the stomach, the heart, the soul. Entered the Age of Realization.
Also, never had in the history of mankind, as many possibilities before. Today, the advancement in technology coupled with the desire of people to cherish in so many ways (technological, cultural and spiritual) provide a context where one Mandala’s designer can find its place in the world, earn money and be very happy with the career he chose.
But then, if the context is favorable and this desire to live a more enjoyable life is in so many hearts, why is it still so difficult to find a fulfilling career?
Because of Moporã, I have talked to many people who are in this process. Some still stuck in jobs they deem unattractive and uninteresting, but no prospects for change, others after many reflections and attempts ended up discovering something that brings them fulfillment. Many are still dedicated to search, while others do not even know where to start.
The latent desire and multitude of possible careers from nowadays makes this search process even more agonizing. But back to what I said in the first paragraph: Working with purpose is an invention of Modernity. We are making history as we seek ways to perform professionally. We are questioning and breaking paradigms while we do not know exactly what model that best suits us. We understand that the old ways of working no longer make sense, but we’re still inventing and testing new models and formats. By trial and error, learning by doing, still walking on eggshells, we begin to navigate in the age of fulfillment, we start gradually feeling more comfortable being part of it.
For me, three elements are very important and maybe can help you make your navigation a little easier:
Do whatever you can do to better understand and make this a mission in life: make a diary, analyze your dreams, read texts from the Internet, do therapy, read self-help books, take courses, discuss your daydreams with friends , meditate, watch yourself. Anything goes! The important thing is you find your way, your way back home. I assure you that is within you that are answers to a full and fulfilled life.
Out of the doghouse: If upgrade, seek to know what’s new or what’s trending in any area you’re interested. If you love fashion and think you can find professionally in this area, go behind what is happening around the world: Read what the experts are talking about, get involved with the subject, look to be part of a project, offer to volunteer . Information is accumulating that this innovative idea can paint in your mind.
Everything you need to know is that the world was not built by people smarter than you. This phrase of Steve Jobs always helps me to restore confidence and the courage to try something new. You are creative, then create! If you have an idea, tell as many people as possible, if you have a project, take the paper. Make it happen.
Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/laurawilliams_x