Instead of wallowing in my misery, I just made some changes.
I saw a bumper sticker on my way to work today:
“Our Police DESERVE Higher Pay”
Let me interject that I know nothing about the economics of Police work. I don’t know what police are paid. I don’t know how hard it is to acquire the skills necessary to do the job. I don’t know how many people are competing for the available positions. I don’t know how dangerous it is. This isn’t about the Police.
I could have researched these facts, but that wouldn’t solve what bothered me about the sticker.
What bothered me was “DESERVE”.
Do any of us DESERVE anything?
How does DESERVING something affect your life?
A few years back I decided I was underpaid.
This was not an emotional decision, I relied entirely on cool-headed logic. Facts and incontrovertible evidence indicated that I DESERVED more money and that my massive contributions to the corporate bottom line were completely overlooked. An oversight of this nature proved my boss was either stupid or evil. Rarely have I been more self-righteously certain of myself.
I hated my job.
Life wasn’t much better.
Then I noticed how bad everything was and I decided to make some changes.
I acknowledged that:
I already had more than enough money to be reasonably comfortable.
I already had as much security as most people can expect.
I already had a boss whose needs supported my family.
I already had everything necessary for a great life.
I had made a deal for employment and I could choose to continue faithfully serving that deal, or go make another one.
Today I enjoy my job.
Today work is fun.
Today life is much better.
Nothing changed but me.
Feeling slighted, like you are deprived of what you DESERVE, is no way to live.
Our Police can do better than that, and so can you.
What changes could you make if you let go of what you DESERVE?
Gwen Bell wrote a letter recently where she posed the question: “How will you know when you’ve made it?”
I got to thinking about that: “What do I lack that, once achieved or acquired, will indicate I’ve made it?
When I looked at it like that I realized I’ve already made it. I’ve read a lot of that sentiment in yoga related writing but it never really spoke to me; it seemed more platitude than practical.
Something in Gwen’s piece resonated differently with me:
- I want secure employment and there are lots of jobs in Healthcare IT. Will a course of study in the field indicate I’ve made it?
- I’ve learned things before. Will a job in a growing field indicate I’ve made it? I have a job now.
- In pursuing the fleeting notion of security I try to position myself for a job I do not have and may not even like. In so doing I sow dissatisfaction with the job I have, like, and excel at.
I’ve made it, and that begs another question …
What do you do when you’ve made it?