Really enjoyed this article and found myself nodding my head in a few spots:
It’s kinda what I was getting at in a previous post – making a meaningful contribution to the world on a daily basis. In my previous job I didn’t think what I did was meaningful, in fact I thought it was downright useless. If I stopped what I was doing the world wouldn’t stop turning and people would still go about their normal lives. There was a point to it for my organisation of course but it was pure desk dronery and paper shuffling to me. My new job, which I started in October, is a little different. I feel like am making a contribution to something a bit more important but it still smacks a little of “busywork” in the grand scheme of things.
I like to think of the usefulness aspect in terms of a zombie apocalypse. If shit hits the fan (and the fan is on high) and normal civilisation ended, being an executive desk drone is not very helpful or constructive. You can’t effectively slice a zombie up in a flurry of a thousand papercuts, staple their brains out or stab them in the eye with a hole punch to save your life. Unless you were a prepper during your home time you’re not going to be able to contribute to what remains of society in any beneficial way except for maybe sending out a memo to get the fk out of town and cc-ing in any living people.
Ultimately to me it comes down to striving for meaning vs working a job for money to pay the bills and be a good consumerist. Of course my definition of what is a meaningful job would be different to yours as I’m sure there are some desk drones who love their job and get a massive sense of satisfaction and significance out of it. And if so, good on them. For me I just want something more, I need more meaning and more constructive usefulness. What that is exactly I don’t know yet and I’m still searching for it and a way to survive while doing it. I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up (something I refuse to do by the way) but I guess along the discovery road I want to learn some essential skills so that I’m not killed off or left for dead if SHTF in whatever form that happened to take. And even if it didn’t, just to be a little bit more self reliant and less consumerist works for me while I’m plodding down the road of life.
Anyway my desk is calling – there are some papers to be shuffled.