The Myth of the “Dream Job”

One of the links I just put up on the previous post goes into how “if your chosen career feels safe, you’ve chosen what society wants for you”, and farther down is “how to break out of the matrix”. For those of you that have bought into this, or think that working in an office is a rat race and boring, or that any “typical” job is going to leave you depressed everyday, you couldn’t be more wrong. The media has done a really good job in the last 10 years of convincing everyone that their working life sucks, that they could be doing so much better work and all you have to do is have a bit of courage and “leave it all behind”. I think I proved in this post just how stupid and dangerous for your career that could be.

See, the thing is, most of those “cool jobs” that you think should be doing are either very unstable or are much harder than you think they are. You probably look at the offices of Google, Apple and Microsoft, for example and think they must be the coolest places on earth to work with their free food, relaxed feel and endless perks. The reality? All the people there work insanely hard. Don’t get me wrong, they love their jobs, but they don’t spend half their working day playing pool and drinking beer. This is the myth that all of those articles about such places peddle – they show the veneer, the surface and how great it must be, they never show the reality of people spending 10-12 hours a day doing serious work.

Get it out of your head right now that 9-5 (or more realistically, 8am til anywhere from 4-6pm) office work is some sort of horrible rat race. I work an 8:30-5 day, and I love my job. Believe it or not, that routine that we are assured is so boring, so depressing, is actually a great strength. I’ll go into this in a future article, but routine allows people to thrive. The corporate prison of working in an office  doesn’t actually exist – unless you let it in your own mind. Any job can be horrible if you tell yourself that you hate it everyday, because soon enough, you’ll believe it. There are definitely other ways that people let it turn into a prison, and that is definitely something I’m going to address in the future. The office itself though? It’s definitely not the soul sucking hell it’s made out to be.

The other thing that I want to speak about briefly is being proud of your job. I was recently talking to a friend of mine that I hadn’t seen for a long while. While we caught up, the conversation inevitable went to what we were both doing for work. She said what she was doing, and in the same sentence of saying she was good at her job she acted completely ashamed. This is the other problem with the media, they have succeeded in making people feel that unless they work for a large company and occupy an important position, that they somehow have to make excuses for where they are. That they need to justify it with things like “I’m trying to work my way up” or “it’s only for a short time while I look for something better”. If you enjoy your job, and even more importantly, are good at it, you have nothing to be ashamed of. Don’t let anyone dictate to you what job makes you happy or is worth doing.

 I know this was a short post, but I hope you got something out of it. It’s all about perspective and that’s what I’m trying to get across. Don’t let the world dictate to you, or colour your perception of what makes you happy.

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