How to Do More of What You Want

The refrain of, “I’ll do all this crap I don’t want to do for most of my life, so that hopefully I’ll have a few years to do what I really want to do and hopefully I’ll be in good enough shape and still alive to do it.” has grown tired.  

I’m not sure how we got to a place where the standard operating procedure is to spend most of your life doing stuff you don’t want to do, in hopes you’ll be able to do a little bit of what you really want later on. 

The world functions best when everyone is doing what they are not only best at, but also most excited and energized by. The industrial revolution moved us away from that idea. It moved us toward a paradigm where we categorize all the work that must be done, define exactly how it should be done and then find people to fit into these clearly defined and labeled, “roles”. 

When you’re in school, you learn stuff and are asked, what you want to be when you grow up. There is a list of roles you can fill (aka jobs) and you must decide which of these boxes you fit into. You get to “pick” because we believe that you should get to choose the one that you’ll be least miserable doing. 

You better pick wisely, because you’re gonna have to do it all day long for many many years, until you get to quit doing it. At that point, you will have saved or invested enough money from doing that thing you picked. That’s the idea anyway. 

That’s just how it is. 

I don’t accept that anything is how it is or that it can’t be changed. When everyone is doing what they most want to do, everyone is fueled by passion, desire and the thing they most devoted to. Whether it’s music, historic architecture, curing cancer or football, everyone has something unique to contribute that — most importantly, they vehemently want to contribute to the world. 

Few people will argue with this, but few people will actually take the scary steps necessary to make it a reality. There’s no three-step process to doing what you most want to do, there’s no single plan that anyone can follow to make it happen. 

Because it’s so unique for each person, each one of us has to find our own path. But delaying it definitely won’t get you there.
Doing it will. 

If you’re passion is music, figure out a way to do more music. If it’s helping cure a disease, do more of that. If it’s playing a sport, do more of that. If actually doing it isn’t feasible, research it, talk to people about it, do whatever you can to move in that direction. 

The world functions best when we’re all doing what we’re supposed to be doing. Don’t just do it for yourself, do it for the future of humanity. 

This article was originally published on the Huffington Post

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