You Are Enough
Has anyone ever offered you this advice?
"Find a way to do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life..."
Has this advice ever actually made you feel positive about yourself, or the path you’ve chosen? Or has it just left you feeling like you should always be doing more than you are to make yourself ‘happy’, and that you’re not living up to your full potential?
I recently heard a motivational speaker ask the audience to rate the dedication they give to their day job. The average response was 7 out of 10. According to the speaker, this meant that we were only contributing 70%, and therefore only operating at 70% of our potential.
"Could you only imagine what you could accomplish if you gave each day 100%?!"
So many questions instantly sprung to mind...
Why don’t my interests and efforts outside of my occupation contribute to my overall potential?
Why should I feel like I’m a less successful person if I’m not madly in love with my day job?
Why should I feel inadequate if I’m happy and content in a job that contributes to others, financially supports me and my lifestyle, and no more than that?
Why should I feel like I’m not doing enough until I’ve managed to figure out how to ‘do what I love’ for a living?
I don’t love what I do for a living. I don't hate it either, but I'm not throw-my-hands-in-the-air smitten with it, and I absolutely don’t need to be.
My occupation satisfies me, and supports me. I enjoy doing it, and it provides me with the means to do things in life that I love - to travel, to write, to cook, to deliver content to you guys, and to spend precious time with my friends and family.
I’m happily married. I live in a wonderful home close to my office with a garden, a dog, and a car. I see my family and friends often, and I feel surrounded by love. I’m part of a local yoga club, and it’s a wonderful, nourishing part of my day. We're able to travel when we feel the pull. We have had enough money and resources to support my husband during his recovery from critical illness, and throughout his gradual return to the workforce. We are blessed.
To assume that this is not enough, and that I should be striving to achieve more for my life - that I should be more ambitious than I am - is fundamentally false. If I were to accept this, I would be accepting a completely meaningless stressor into my life. The belief that I, also, am not enough. That my standards for my life are not high enough, and the choices I have made are not goal-oriented enough. That I could have more happiness, money and success - if only I were to try harder.
This is simply not where my priorities lie, and is nothing short of ambition shaming.
I am already well and truly living up to my full potential.
There are others - many of whom are taking care of the ‘less desirable’ jobs that keep society moving - who are also already living up to their full potential.
Life is always throwing curve balls. You can either face challenges with the stress of how you will continue to keep up the pace and strive for more in the face of such misfortune, or you can face them with the knowledge that there is a lesson to learn, that there's no rush to learn it, and you will be a richer person for the experience.
Taking gratitude and pride in the life we have, no matter where it has led us, will make us happier than any day job ever will. I know I have no reason to feel incomplete or unfulfilled, no matter how many motivational speakers who have never met me suggest otherwise.
And neither do you <3