I read this in my Twitter feed – ‘Life is staggeringly short and infinitely precious’. Makes you pause and think for a while – right?
At work, we have ‘work’ / business projects. And in life, we squeeze it into an agreeable term – mortality project. And therefore, the commonality is they are all projects we tend to, comply with, and work on.
So when our long-termism looks seemingly short, yet blissfully seizable, why do we sometimes make not-so-favorable career choices for ourselves?
Perhaps the gratification of a paycheck that pays our bills and occasional indulgences convinces us to choose a job that we can get through with. And sometimes, the illusion of ‘busyness’ helps us navigate our job so that we can show something to our next employer to validate our experience and some credentials we make our way.
But in midst of this mental meandering and micro adjustments, we miss what we truly want to do. And may I stretch to say that we miss being ourselves?
Let’s look at the cost of inaction, especially when we feel stuck and unsatisfied with our work:
1) Our growth mindset alters over a period of time. We think in terms of settling with the status-quo and perceived functional stability instead of talking initiatives and growing in creative ways.
2) Our thinking tilts toward long-termism. Which is good – it’s always suggestive to think for the long-haul but not in the context of compromising with your career projects. Instead, it’s always better to thing ‘incrementally longer’ so that you can go backwards and work towards stepping up effectively with excellent growth pivots.
3) Our career capital starts to dilute. Taking the right job helps you establish your personal brand. But when you pick unfitting jobs – they could spoil your brand’s definition and image in the market. This can potentially leave your prospective employers a bit clueless and wayward in trying to find the right role/ position for you, especially knowing that you have been in a ‘square peg, round hole’ kind of situation.
So how do you change the course of your career project?
By constructively thinking about the very fragility of your life’s tenure. While it’s great to believe in the ‘infiniteness’ of your life’s moments, but it’s equally important to note that it has an expiry date as well. Now this sounds candid, but isn’t it also comforting to know that we have a crucial role to play in our lives? That we are all here for a reason? A purpose?
When you envision your life with the lens of mortality, you deliberately make careful and meaningful choices – including your career episode(s).
And so, when you measure your cost of inaction and optimally work towards creating a purposeful career, your mortality project helps you accomplish your career’s key milestones.
Go ahead and give your career a new beginning and an even more glorifying ending!