There was a sales and marketing assistant in the company I used to work for.
He was the primary contact for all important clients.
And the turnover of the sales and marketing manager, who would be his direct boss, was super high.
It was a highly responsible position, and he often bore the brunt of the storm when business didn’t perform well.
The assistant took care of everything while several managers came and went.
It went on for several months.
One day, I asked him why he wasn’t putting himself forward for the vacant position he was filling every day.
To me, it seemed a logical step to pursue.
He knew the ins and outs of business and was doing all the work anyway.
Nah, I don’t want the responsibility.
Honestly, his response baffled me.
I remember trying to understand what he meant really hard!
I was suggesting it in his best interest. I seriously thought it was an amazing opportunity for him.
For someone like me who thrived on responsibilities (and perks!), not wanting the responsibility was genuinely a curious notion.
But the brief conversation taught me an important life lesson.
No matter how appealing the proposition might be, not everyone wants the same thing as you.
The whole thing shook my belief system! But it also helped me understand other people better.
What each of us pursues to make life meaningful can differ from what others consider it to be.
In the end, it comes down to:
What’s important to YOU?
Imagine having a close friend or family member who keeps pushing you to go for a particular career path.
A reputable career that comes with perks and responsibilities they think everyone wants.
If you don’t know what’s important to you, you’ll likely give in to their antics, persuasion, and pressure, and spend the next few years of your life in a job you don’t like, feeling miserable and unhappy.
This kind of pressure comes in many forms, which ultimately leads us to make bad choices.
Perhaps you should’ve pursued journalism, as you’ve always wanted since you were little.
You gave in to your family’s advice for a better job prospect and, instead, chose finance, now regretting it.
Maybe you should’ve reined in your fear and opened your Shopify shop sooner instead of letting your partner talk you out of it.
Unless you’re fairly headstrong and know exactly what you want, you’ll stumble through life until you realise the life you’ve always wanted is not what others have told you or expected of you.
Despite your best efforts, you can’t avoid a few hindsight moments.
But you will certainly have fewer of them when you spend a little time getting to know yourself.
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From my colleague’s dismissive response, I thought he disliked taking responsibility.
It turned out I was wrong big time!
It wasn’t because he tried to avoid taking responsibility. Just that the job wasn’t the kind of responsibility he was willing to put up with.
He knew the difference between working for a paycheck and working for himself.
I learned it from this book much later, which is a must-read for anyone who wants to create a wealthy life as my former colleague did.
Yep, he knew exactly what he wanted and pursued it in his spare time, ignoring what others perceived to be an opportunity at work.
He was much cleverer than I gave him credit for because he knew exactly what was important to him.
How about you?
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