Loving Life? Part 4

A few weeks ago, I began a series based on an article that was shared on Facebook titled, “10 Things That The People Who Love Their Lives Are Doing Differently,” by Paul Hudson, originally posted on elitedaily.com.

This article intrigued me because I do consider myself to be someone who loves my life. However, I found several items on this list that I’m not doing very well. So, I thought I’d take each “philosophy” listed and do a bit of “virtual” self-analyzing. I’ll post one item weekly.

After all, there’s always room to love my life a little more.

Here’s the fourth thing people who love their lives do differently:

When you ask them what they do, they don’t give you a job title.

I’m not so sure I agree with the header of this “philosophy,” because I know plenty of happy people who, when asked what they do, will reply with their profession. Hudson states:

When you ask them what they do, they respond with what they do in their lives, not what work they do in order to pay for the lives they want to one day be living.

Frankly, I think that mostly applies to people who don’t have “real” jobs. Like me. Which brings me to the realization that I’m lucky to be able to reply that I watch my grandson. And in my spare time, I write. (ha ha) There is no more rewarding job. So why then, do I sometimes feel the need to follow up with, “I’ll be taking care of Tommy for a year, then I have to get a ‘real’ job.”

I’m not sure why I sometimes include that little add-on, because I firmly believe there could be no more real job than what I’m doing right now. Maybe I’m afraid the person to whom I’m responding doesn’t believe that, I’m not sure. Yes, a more traditional job will “pay for the life I want to one day be living,”–at this point, retirement–but this is a real job–one I’m proud of and grateful for.

Jan and Tommy

But I love my life no more or no less than when I used to answer that I was an Office Manager, or even a Vice President.

Hudson states:

The real trick is that these individuals know better than to wait to live the lives they want to live.

In my opinion, THAT should have been the header. I don’t think my happiness has anything to do with what I tell people I do. What matters is that at this time in my life, I know better than to wait to live the life I want to live.

That’s the great thing about getting older. I realize I don’t have time to wait.

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15 Responses to Loving Life? Part 4

  1. Jan, I think the statement you quote here, doesn’t leave room for people who do what they love AND make a living doing it, something that would be great for all of us to be able to do. I’ve had a variety of jobs–teaching high school,, working at a health club, demonstrating exercise equipment, running my own personal training business–but the “jobs” that are most important have been being a wife, mother and home schooling our girls through high school.

    While both my husband I believe that, it can be difficult in the face of conversations with friends or family where everyone else “works”, i.e. in a paying job. Everyone swaps stories about work and isn’t going to be that interested in my non-“work” stories…even though they believe what I’m doing is important.

    Now that both our girls are out of the house and we’ve moved, I’m going to look this fall for a part-time job, for a variety of reasons. But what I do to support family and friends is still going to be at the top of “What do you do?”

    janet

    • Jan Morrill says:

      You make good points, Janet. I think the header Hudson used is a little idealistic in that just because someone replies with what they do professionally as opposed to what they do out of some passion, doesn’t mean he or she doesn’t love life. Thanks for your comment!

  2. Me too, Jan. I so agree with you, and I feel that whatever we are doing at present should be important to us. When I had to work while raising my kids, what I did with them was more important, though I liked my job(s) in most cases. It’s hard to hold down a full time job and raise two children, even with the help of a husband. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t enjoyable and very important. Thanks for pointing out these things in your blogs recently. I’ve found them enlightening. Miss you.

    • Jan Morrill says:

      I worked while raising my two kids, too, Velda. And although I typically would reply with my job title if someone asked what I did, I certainly felt my job as “mom” was most important. And, just because I responded with my job title, certainly didn’t mean I didn’t love my life. 🙂 And boy, do I miss all of you! Love you!

  3. You are so right, Jan. And when people ask, “What do you do?”, I tend to find they normally do mean, “What do you do for a living?”, in most cases.
    I used to answer with (insert profession here), but I don’t think that meant I was unhappy. I just gave the answer I thought they expected.
    These days I always answer with, “I look after my husband and my dogs, and I write.”
    I think it baffles the ones that are really asking what I do for a living, but, oh well. Perhaps they should be more concise with their questions 😉

    • Jan Morrill says:

      I agree, Alice. I’m often amused at both my response (write, take care of my grandson, etc., with a propensity to add, “But I’ll get a real job in a year,”) and the response of the person who asked. It’s usually either, “Oh, that’s nice,” or “Oh, that’s wonderful. How lucky you are.” And yes, I’m very lucky. 🙂

      • You have two real jobs. Looking after your grandson and writing. Like me looking after my little family here (furry kids included). I know neither pay all that well, but that does not negated them as ‘real’. In fact, in my opinion they are both more real than most people’s perception (like a 9-5 office job) seems to be of a ‘real job’ 🙂

  4. I find that an odd statement by Hudson, too. People with full- or part-time jobs, including stay-home moms, will of course answer with their job title. People without set jobs may answer with their outside interests and involvements. When people ask me what I do, I say “everything,” even though I have a little part-time job. Maybe that means I’m happy (I am), but it also means I’m overextended and sometimes stressed out!

  5. Mustang.Koji says:

    Jan, through it all, you do have the most important job: grandmother and mother… and its without salary! Perhaps that’s the best kind…

  6. Steve says:

    First I love the picture of you holding your grand baby up.

    Second. I’ve struggled to write something about this one because Mr Hudson’s post seems provocative more than anything. It challenges the common meaning of a common question. I suppose I could interpret his point as an effort to redefine question. “what do you do?”  So I’m game, next time someone asks me “what do you do?” I’ll respond by saying…. “I try to find ways to soar, to discover stories and truths through art and words and share them with others in a way  that lifts them and lifts me.” I can see a new acquaintance I’ve met at a busstop looking at me slightly dismayed and saying, “okay,” and thinking maybe he won’t ask anymore questions. But then again Mr Hudson suggests I really shouldn’t care what other’s think. Most of the time I’m pretty happy with my life.

    • Jan Morrill says:

      I thought the very thing, Steve, that I might just try this out and reply with the things I do that I’m passionate about. If nothing else, it’d be fun to see the look on the inquirer’s face. 🙂

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