Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Love what I Do........Please!
In this morning's Globe and Mail the Thought Du Jour was a quote by Roger Ebert. Mr Ebert (obviously an amateur philosopher as well as a famous film critic) said "What you do instead of your work is your real work." Well, on the surface, that statement made a little sense to me; sometimes when I should be doing my "not so real" work, I am playing tennis (knew I should have gone pro years ago!) or I am doing a little digging and planting in my garden (landscape architect has a nice ring to it) or sometimes I am writing this blog (that's me - the next Giller prize winner!), but then I started going a little further with his notion. What about when I am stealing an afternoon nap on a rainy day when business is slow? Is there a job that matches that description? What about snapping bubble wrap - I like doing that - could I go pro? Or how about when I decide to go shopping for some new shoes? Is that my real work? Perhaps what Mr Ebert should have said was "What you really love to do instead of your real work is your real work." Now that makes perfectly good sense to me. I have actually tested this theory. In 1998, I went back to school so I could get my accreditation to do what I always wanted to do - Decorate! (AKA - spend other people's money on all the things you wish you could have yourself!) My daughter was 4 at the time and I wanted not only to do what I love, but to have the flexibility to be home for her after school and to seem to her like I was always available. I started my own home-based business as an interior decorator. It was all of those things - the creative process I loved, the ability to drop everything and go to the zoo with her class and even sneak an afternoon nap in from time to time. However, in the past 7 months, business has slowed and now I have waaaaay too much time to fill. Suddenly, what I love do do no longer pays the bills. Should I look for a job in the corporate world? (horrors - committing to a 9-5 day!) Should I just stop "sport" shopping altogether, not that I have choice on that one now (that alone has helped balance the household budget according to my husband). How about reinventing myself again - like Madonna? (without all the hours in the gym). Any hopes of a quick economic recovery were dashed yesterday when Warren Buffet predicted at least a period of 5 years before that might happen. Can't be sitting around waiting that long for people to start redecorating again. So, I have begun here. Yes, right here on this page. Someone once said, if you want to be a writer, start writing. Since my original "calling" (well it seemed that way at the time) was to become a journalist, (I have a degree in that too) this is the perfect opportunity to brush up my old writing skills. Although, no one is paying to read my words of wisdom (yet), I know one thing for sure. This feels like I'm doing something else I really love to do and for now, that's good enough. At least it justifies my time and time will tell if that other old theory - "Do what you love and the money will follow" actually works. If it's a crock, well, mama won't be getting any new shoes any time soon, but it will be fun writing about it.