We are animals of habit, all of us. From the time we are born till the time we hear the division bell we shall continue to ape the nearest primate. Our language, dress sense, accessories, habits, cars and even spouses are just a reflection of what we have seen around us. Originality is saved to explain why we do not do things differently. Its not as if we do not understand the difference between who we are and who we could be, we are too scared to be what we might end up as, in case we tried...
From a tender age we are extolled at length about the virtues and the wisdom in being a professional engineer/doctor/lawyer/accountant/stock broker or what have you. In some cases there is enough pressure exerted towards the sports to either create an illusion of being a competitor or as it happens in most cases we end up with an injury for life - its that bad back or the weak knee we see our friends nurse all the time!
How many of us end up as what we desire to be? What does it take to achieve this?
I have to think of the many people I've come across who complain of not being 'in the right job'. None, not even one of them blamed themselves for this fiasco; they blamed their parents and guardians or teachers in school and my favourite excuse amongst them 'situation at home'! Well its time to rid ourselves of this malaise.
Ask yourself now. Sitting wherever you, whether reading this article at work or in your home, ask yourself - Are you satisfied with where you are headed in your life right now?
This question applies to all of us here. Teachers, students, professionally qualified all alike.
Only a lucky few will find that their answer pleases them. A few will fool themselves into thinking the answer brings unease but that they are 'getting there'. Most of you who haven't got the right answer have already left reading this article because you know the rest of it will displease you further.
To the ones left behind - I write the rest for you.
Firstly, it’s never too late. Believe me. Regardless of how much you are earning right now, be it more than enough or just to make ends meet, or in some cases not even so, your life will be so much better when you are doing something you have always wanted.
This brings me to the topic of this write - "How to avoid work and get paid". As you must have guessed by now this is not a quick reach scheme or an article teaching you the tricks of the trade at how to shirk work. This is to inspire you in the best and only way I can to make your work, your freedom from work itself!
Sounds crazy doesn't it? I didn't believe it myself till I wrote this piece. Honestly.
We are all born with dreams. These dreams are not in particular but a plethora of ideas and musings over the initial few years of our life. The younger dreams of being a fireman and cowboy and Superman for that matter get replaced by more mature and realistic dreams. Of being photographers, artists, poets, writers, singers, dancers, actors, barbers and running a restaurant. Over time these too get washed over. We shove these dreams under the carpet, forget they ever existed. We instead replace the void by filling them with the dreams of our parents and guardians. Am not saying anyone who dreamed of being a doctor is only following in the footsteps of his parents. Of course, many of us do dream of being in suit, seated in a chair looking out over Manhattan. But millions of us recognize the void in our parents/guardians lives and try to fill that void, that empty need. In filling a void in their lives, we create one in ours. But these thoughts are alien thoughts. Our mind and body fights against them till our will overpowers them all. In absorbing these dreams of others we get infected. We lose our happiness, lose our smiles, our freedom to choose, our willingness to try something new. Then, one day, we teach our children to do the same. Compromise.
The vicious circle has continued for generations. Shall continue for generations too unless you make the change.
Start small. Sit yourself down in a comfy chair and ask yourself - What do you want your Life to look like?
Are you what your parents dreamed you would be and if so, was it also your dream? This is not the time to blame your parents. This is not the time to blame yourself either. This is the time for change.
If you have already mortgaged yourself from head-to-toe then reach out. Get financial help now. Go out to your bank, your parents, your best friend, your colleague in office and ask him for that loan.
Get yourself the arrows you will need in your quiver to aim for a new life, maybe a degree that you couldn't attempt as a teenager or a course that you never found time for, go do that now. Then leave what you are doing now and go ahead and chase your dream. Of course, you may have to resign. Forget the fear of failure. Of being told you are wrong. Of being told it’s an irresponsible step. They are not judging you, the ones who say this, they are judging themselves. They are scared of being in the position you are - that of risking everything for happiness. But if you are not happy - what good are you to those around you?
Maybe your wife will have to work again. Maybe you will have to move to a smaller, cheaper apartment. Maybe, one day, you can be at home during dinner, sharing laughter and stories, not staring at the keyboard. Maybe you can take your kid out to see the new animated feature like you promised him and not cancel out as always. Maybe, one day, you can be happy again. Maybe, just maybe, you'll get your Life back. Go into office eagerly to spend the day there challenging your mind and not just your body. Maybe, without the burden of expectations to hide under, your work won't feel like work anymore. But you'll still get paid for it. Maybe you will be first one you know, who doesn't work but still gets paid for it. That's a lot of 'maybe's. But then isn't life all about the 'maybe', about possibilities and chances.
Take the plunge. Start your Life again.