Thursday, April 2, 2009

A Champagne Pyramid of Complacency

“Life’s too short!” My mom yelled as I left the house this morning.

Life’s too short for exactly what?

Is life’s too short to work a job that you hate?

Maybe Life is so short that we need to work a job we hate, so that we have money to do the things we want to do.

I’m pretty sure most people aren’t doing what they would like to do with their lives.

I’m sure a lot of people are content with their lives. They work a job that they don’t mind, for a reasonable wage, and they see it as a fair trade. Sadly I think that has become the goal a lot of people strive for. I say sadly, but right now I would love to have a job that I could tolerate for a fair wage.

At what point does this arrangement go from something we feel we can justify because of our youth, to a way of life; maybe not just in regards to our employment.

Maybe it’s a trickle down effect, like a champagne pyramid of complacency. What if it makes its way down to the base of that pyramid; the thing that our whole life is based on?

What would happen if we took the same attitude to our relationships that most of us take to employment?

I get the feeling that a lot of people think “I can tolerate my job. It pays me well enough. Sure there’s some thing else I would rather do, but that’s a big risk, and I don’t think I’m willing to take it”. I say that because I’ve asked “What would you do with your life if you had a million dollars”, and not once has someone said, “Exactly what I’m doing now”.

Can you imagine if that was how I felt about my non existent girlfriend? My Friends? Or my Family?

What about my Church?

So what’s the secret? Never settling for anyone, or any place, always jumping around thinking that there’s always something better?

Maybe the answer is to put those things before you, base your happiness on those around you, and what you contribute to them.

I don’t really have an answer here. I guess the question “can I make myself happy by putting others first?” is inherently flawed. If I was truly just interested in putting others before me would I be so selfish to ask the question “how can I make myself happy?”

That doesn’t stop all of us from asking it though does it?


  1. Great Blog Tony!! I'm so proud of you. You keep at it buddy ;)

  2. Very interesting blog... The thing a lot of people forget is that a job is a means to an end. It pays the bills. A lot of people may not be happy at their jobs or doing what they would like to be doing, but in essence a job allows the freedom for one to enjoy his or her passions on leisure time.

    I see a lot of young people who want to work a cool job and get paid a good wage, but the fact of the matter remains, those do not just usually fall onto the plate. Our parents put in their time, we have to put in ours.

    Just because complacency is acceptable in employment does not make it acceptable in other avenues in life. Why do we wonder why the rate of divorce and adultery is so high today? People settled.

    It becomes an artform to know the difference between accepting second best versus what could be something beautiful.

    Very interesting thoughts, Tony. One of your best blogs yet.

  3. It's all about attitude, man.

    I will hate every job that comes my way if I am basing my hapiness on my surroundings. Conversly, if my hapiness comes from something other than my surroundings, no job will be too terrible.

    This is what I don't understand about our generation: We say we've moved past the fickle materialism of our parents, and yet we constantly complain that our job doesn't pay enough, isn't stisfying enough, or that our Starbucks lids don't fit just right. We're shallow, and we're afraid to admit it.

    I've worked in crappy circumstances - much harder than most people have ever worked, and harder than I ever wanted to. Ever wondered what it feels like to be shoveling herring at 3 AM after doing the same since 3AM the day before? It ain't fun. And yet, I can't say I regret it.

    I'm not saying this to gloat - all I'm saying is that maybe there's something to be learned from the guy who's been a night watchman for the past 40 years, or the guy who's done whatever neccesary to feed his family. Maybe they know something we're missing in our quest for fulfillment.

    And, for the record, if I had a million dollars I'd prbably be doing what I'm doing now - just debt-free.

  4. Very cool, Jordan. Great outlook.