“I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”
– Steve Jobs.
That’s wisdom straight from the mouth of one of the modern world’s greatest entrepreneurs.
The question of job security against job satisfaction is one of the greatest debates faced by the mind of a working person in the 21st century. The kind of question which often leads to a mid-life crisis and queries about existentialism. No, the answer is not buying a red car or becoming a monk. All jokes apart, it is a question which has plagued many, and in a world where people begin running with the first light of day, often functioning as automatons to get the day’s work done, leaving passion at the wayside until life has passed them by, it is one which needs to be addressed.
As the Steve Jobs quote above says, if you are not enjoying your job, if you are only doing it for the money, then how different are you from a robot?
Many people advice caution and are of the opinion that you should continue working, no matter whether you like the job or not, so that you can be safe and prepared for the future. But if you are sacrificing your present for a hazy future, then are you even truly living? Often while thinking of the long term, we forget about the present moment, and do not truly live, until suddenly, life has passed us by, and we await the embrace of death, full of regrets, thinking of how we should have written that book we always wanted to write, or gone on that vacation to that place we always dreamed about, or pursued that line of work and business which we were always passionate about. Remember, it is better to take a chance and risk it, because once the time is past, regrets are eternal.
Of course, this does not mean that you should forgo everything and take blind risks. No, job safety is important, as well, especially in a world of rising costs. But choosing job security over your own passion and life? That is not only foolhardy, but also cowardly. In the end you have one life, and it is up to you to make the most of it. Go, chase that dream of yours. A blind risk is stupid, but a calculated risk to maximize your chance of success is a smart way to get what you want, while making sure you are in a safe zone for the future as well. Take a chance. In the end, you are the captain of your own ship, and it is better to weather the storm on your own terms than cry foul if you end up losing anyway by following someone else’s advice.
Carpe Diem, as the late Robin Williams so profoundly said in Dead Poets Society. Live in the moment.