I’ve been unemployed since January and I must say it’s been one hell of a ride. I finally got to take the time for myself to really understand who I am and what type of work I want to do. I don’t want to follow the norm, I want to find a career that is meaningful and where the employer recognizes the work of their employees and cares not only about the end product or success but also the well-being of their employees. If your employees are miserable, they will not be engaged or productive.
I want to break the rule, not settle down in my 20s or focus on money. I’ve lived a cushiony life and I want to challenge myself to go beyond my comfort zone, take risks and make something out of my life. I don’t want to work just to be able to pay my bills, go out with my friends on the weekends and take a vacation an odd time here and there. I want to set the rules and live the life I want.
I stumbled upon Chris Guillebeau’s book “The Art of Non-Conformity, Set Your Own Rules, Live The Life You Want and Change The World” at Chapters (one of many places where I feel at ease, where I can tune out the world and get lost in a book or the beauty of their decor). I’m only 20 pages in but I wanted to share what he calls the “11 ways to be unremarkably average”. This list represents a safe, comfortable life. This list isn’t complete and you can alter it to base it to your own experiences. (List taken directly from the book, page 9).
1. Accept what people tell you at face value.
2. Don’t question authority.
3. Go to college because you’re suppose to, not excuse you want to learn something.
4. Go overseas once or twice in your life, to somewhere safe life England.
5. Don’t try to learn another language; everyone else will eventually learn English.
6. Think about starting your own business, but never do it.
7. Think about writing a book, but never do it.
8. Get the largest mortgage you qualify for and spend 30 years paying for it.
9. Sit at a desk 40 hours a week for an average of 10 hours of productive work.
10. Don’t stand out or draw attention to yourself.
11. Jump through hoops. Check off boxes.
When I read this, I was shocked at how much of it rang true to my own life. For the past few months though, I’ve had (and still do) the desire to break that routine/cycle/mentality, whatever you might call it and make the life I want to live. I know I have the power, the strength and mentality to set my own rules. And so do you!
'If you've been going through life as a sleepwalker, it's time to wake up. The journey begins right now.” Chris Guillebeau