I picked up Designing Your Life by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans because I want to know how to find a career I love. Here’s my review.
I‘ve celebrated quite a few birthdays here on Driftyness. There was my 24th, which was about trying to value the slow process of building; and my 25th, which focused on how I wanted the last half of my 20s to be. And with my 26th birthday around the corner, I’m starting to think about focus.
I’ve spent time sketching out the big picture of what I want my life to be like, but now it feels time to drill down and start filling out the smaller details. It’s time to focus on building.
A quick review of my life tells me that life hasn’t gone the way I intended (I thought I’d be a young, sexy doctor by now) and I’ve learned to be more flexible with my plans. Instead of a bunch of concrete milestones, what I want for myself at 26 is to have a sense of direction.
One of the areas in my life that needs direction the most is my career. I’ve changed my career plans, done things to please others, worked for the money, and took on jobs because they seemed like something I ought to be doing even though I didn’t know how they would bring me closer to what I wanted. Now that I’m getting close to graduation, I don’t want to keep doing that.
Unfortunately, I don’t know what exactly I’d do instead.
I started reading Designing Your Life by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans to help me come up with answers. Here’s what I’ve learned so far.
Happy holidays! What have you been up to this season? Aside from eating, sleeping, and just enjoying not having to rush anywhere, I’ve been thinking I should get a blog post up.
You ever stay away from something so long that even getting started becomes really intimidating? I needed willpower for Christmas. Santa was late as all hell, but at least he delivered. We’ve got a post!
Fun fact: Driftyness has been around since I was in high school, around 7 or 8 years ago. It’s been through many iterations over the years, first starting out as a place for an unhappy girl to vent her unhappy thoughts, then a place to document and share my healthy hair journey, then a fashion blog, then this.
I’ve struggled to define what this is. Is this a lifestyle blog if I don’t write about things like fashion and makeup? What’s my niche? What’s my brand? Despite the courses I’ve taken and the reading I’ve done, I’ve tried and failed to answer these questions because nothing seems to feel right.
How do you encapsulate “likes to write and hopes that people take something positive away from writing” in a brand? Do you turn it into an unpalatably long acronym, LTWAHTPTSPAFW?
I’ve been struggling to figure out who I am as writer of this blog. What should I say? How do I say it? What kind of message am I trying to get across?
Interestingly, these are the same kinds of questions I’ve been asking of myself as I become an adult-adult–the kind that doesn’t even need to announce she’s grown for people to know.
Kaje Marie is a former social worker turned blogger who writes about her quest for freedom and finding her God-given purpose at UnKajed Thoughts.
Back in the summer, I had a casual conversation with Kaje in the comments section of my post, Active Dreaming and the Art of Getting Ish Done. In her comment, she described a view of success that I’d been quietly cultivating but had never heard anyone else say publicly:
“Success…once upon a time I viewed success as the big house out in the suburbs, climbing to the top in my career, and a six figure income. Today, success to me is living a life of freedom, joy, and impact, and constantly being in pursuit of being a better me. So it’s a transition away from the material, the tangible and performance based kind of success.”
Wanting to delve deeper, I interviewed Kaje about what it’s like to chase an unconventional type of success in a culture that values the material.
Getting older and becoming more of an adult comes with some growing pains, as my mom calls them. I’ve definitely been going through them.
My twenties have so far been punctuated by a pervasive and increasing sense of uncertainty. Even though I’m learning to cope with the ambiguity of this part of my life, sometimes I struggle with it.
Additionally, moving from the relatively carefree period of my teens and childhood into the ever-increasing responsibility of my twenties has been shocking. And there is a little tint of sadness at the edges of my life as I watch my parents age and bury people I have loved dearly. The sadness comes from the events themselves, but also from the knowledge that such heart-wrenching things are normal.
So how do I make peace with the messiness of life? How do I end up like one of those women who’ve gone through decades of life and some hard things but still celebrate its goodness in the way they live with joy and optimism every day?
There is something that drives and motivates each of us in life. We may know what lies underneath our pull toward a purpose–one that’s designed specifically for us. Or we may just make the conscious decision to chase after the pull on our lives; knowing that it will lead us to the very things we want and need the most. Fulfillment.
I was curious about this idea when I first read about it on millenial wisdom blog Let’s Build Futures. LBF put a name to this feeling I’d been having of being drawn towards something else in life, even though my life was going fine. How could it be possible to feel like something’s off even when there’s nothing wrong? LBF called that feeling the Pull and describes it as our calling. Interested in talking more about this idea, LBF and I agreed to chat about our Pull and the things we’re doing to chase it.