Quit your day job.
Okay, don’t quit your day job. But, unless you happen to be doing what you love – and I mean really LOVE (you know, that can’t eat, can’t sleep, reach for the stars, over the fence, world series kinda thing)…
…then quit letting it take over your life.
If you’re not doing what you love, it’s time to flip your thinking.
Most of us can’t afford to quit our day jobs and start doing what we love, because most of us love things that take time, effort, and commitment in order to become a source of income. Sadly, our M.O. is to put the things we love in a box labeled “later.” And, sadly, “later” is just a euphemism for “never.”
Few of us would refuse to take 2 or even 3 jobs to pay our bills and feed our families, but how many of us are willing to put in the same effort to feed our passions?
Each of us has a dream we wish we could pursue. The question is, how do we make it happen?
First, shift your focus. By all means, don’t use this post as an excuse to “check out” at work, but do you bring your job with you in your mind wherever you go? Challenge yourself to zoom out and look at the big picture. If you don’t want to stay in your job forever, what is within your power right now that can help you change your circumstances in the future?
If you truly want something and are willing to work hard, chances are, you can make it happen.
Go back to school at night if you need to. Learn a new skill you’ve been wanting to learn. The internet is full of free webinars, online courses, and tutorials to teach you anything from how to rebuild your transmission to how to code a website. If you’ve been putting it off, stop! If you invest in yourself now, it will open doors of opportunity in the future for you to get a job you love, or even to help you create your own dream job. Figure out what you need to do, and then do it. Stop letting your day job define your life and run your schedule.
Maybe you’re thinking, “I know exactly what I’d like to do, but how will I ever find the time for it?”
Every year, we have 8,760 hours, and most of us work at our day job for less than 2,600 (or 30%) of those hours. On average, Americans sleep about 6.8 hours per night (2,482 hours in a year), according to Gallup. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Americans spend 4 hours and 59 minutes on leisure-related activities every day – including 2 hours and 47 minutes of TV time:
Last Friday, I challenged you to determine your biggest Time Suckers. What are they? How much time do they suck out of your life every day? What could you do with just two or three of those hours a few days a week?
If you are waiting for a point in the future when you magically have more time, you will still be waiting when you die.
None of us has any more time than anyone else. If you do not choose to make time when you are at your busiest, you will not use the time you have when you have it.
The point is, you can quit your day job. Not today, maybe not tomorrow – but it doesn’t have to determine the next 20/30/40 years of your life if you don’t want it to. If you are willing build the discipline it takes to make time for what matters most to you, then your dreams don’t have to die on the altar of your responsibilities.
Today, take some time to really evaluate how you spend your time. Besides your essential responsibilities (your job, sleep, eating food, taking care of your family, etc.), what are you doing with your days? Even in those areas – are you truly intentional in the way you spend the hours and minutes of your day? If I took a sneak peek into your schedule, would I be able to guess what you really care about?
If not, be honest with yourself about it. Now is not the time to justify all the things you do. Now is the time to own up and admit those areas where you have no idea how you use your time.
Living intentionally is not about getting everything perfect on the first try. It is about developing a greater awareness of your soul, your habits, and your passions, and allowing your values and beliefs to dictate your lifestyle. Each day, find more ways to be more purposeful with your thoughts, goals, money, skills, and most importantly – your time.
Write down (right now!) a few ways you can start being more intentional with your time, make a plan, commit to it, tell somebody, and start today!