Hardly anyone finds their dream job on day one of his or her career. Often it takes many jobs to get to where we really want to go — that oh so elusive goal of happiness at work. Not every job feels like it fits. In fact, some jobs don’t feel like they could ever fit anyone we know! But that doesn’t mean we aren’t getting something from a non-dream job – in addition to a paycheck, of course.
On that thought, I once wrote about Fatima the Spinner on another blog. Fatima spent many years railing against the seemingly heartless universe for all the disasters she had to face and all the different non-dream jobs she had to learn how to do. And she learned them well. But where was HER dream career?
Sounds like a great story for Work To The Wise! 🙂
My quest for the elusive
What I wrote in that other post:
“My life has been like Fatima’s in many ways. She goes from land to land and job to job (in essence) always wondering why she must move on, why she hasn’t found the one place she truly belongs yet. Each time she learns a new skill, but always something happens that causes her to move on.
And then one day, as fate would have it, after surviving yet another disaster, Fatima lands in China, where they desperately need someone with ALL the skills she’s acquired. And it is here, finally, she finds love and happiness.
I just love this story. Believe me … I’ve turned to it many times when life got rough and I needed to remember that today is just a small piece of the whole picture. And that whatever is happening to me in any given moment may actually be helping build me up for what I need to do one day. It’s my way of putting moments in time into perspective.”
Some people find their life’s calling early in life. But others (like me) follow Fatima’s path of gathering knowledge and experiences year after year and even decade after decade, until one day, at long last, all those odd little pieces fit together perfectly, like a giant jig-saw puzzle.
Or better yet, as I like to think of it, all the threads of our life’s tapestry come together. And at last we see the whole beautiful picture.
Hope Fatima’s story can help you!
If you ever feel like Fatima, I hope you think of her story and remember that even a stupid job that drives you crazy may give you one skill or some small piece of knowledge. Or even a connection with a person who may one day hold the key to your true happiness at work.
We can’t see the whole picture from where we stand now. But I can tell you from personal experience, one day the pieces may fit together in a way that you never could have imagined. Especially without knowing all the pieces yet. And I wish you all that “aha!” moment.
In the meantime, I hope this post offers a little helpful perspective. Or at least gives you something to smile about when your current job starts to bug you big time!
More posts to help
Of course this isn’t the whole key to happiness at work. Only you know what opens the lock for you. In case you’d like to read more, here are some other posts on the topic:
[NOTE: Post updated in 2020]
About the author…
Ronnie Ann, founder of Work To the Wise and Work Coach Cafe, bases her real-world advice on her many years as an organizational consultant where she helped interview and hire people, added to a certificate from NYU in Career Planning & Development, as well as her many adventures as a serial job seeker.