Monday, March 28, 2011

Job Advice

Dear David,
I hate my job. It is totally meaningless to me. I make good money but going into the office every day is boring, boring, boring. But I can't think of anything I would rather do. Is it just the money?
~What to do

Dear What to Do,
I have a t-shirt framed on the wall in my study. It is yellow and has a photo of Marilyn Monroe looking a little confused on it. Over Marilyn's head is says in large letters "Then It Hit Me." Underneath it says:
"I'm not going to be a movie star.
I won't get to be a rockstar.
I'm going to be stuck on the payroll
Doing a job that doesn't interest me
For a very long time"

There you have it, my dear. There are two things that you can do. Is there something realistic you would like to do? Work with the poor? Teach Third Grade? Be a cowboy? You can do these things but you will not have much money and they have to be very meaningful to you because you won't have a lot else.

We cannot all be a Picasso or Dr. Schweitzer. We cannot all work with the natives in Africa. What we can do is become very good at the work we do best and earn money to pay for our lifestyle.

I believe you can only feel strongly emotionally about an hour and a half a day. If you can squeeze that in doing karate, dancing lessons, looking at old movies, whatever and you really love it, that leaves twenty-two and a half hours to fill in. You can sleep for eight, eat for three or four, that still leaves plenty of time to work eight hours a day, whether you like it or not. Remember, Coco Chanel said, "I never designed a good dress until I didn't care anymore."

You can do excellent professional work without caring. You can save the caring for that hour and a half when you can muster some emotions. Really, you cannot FEEL more than that. So figure out what you do best, become an expert, be relentless about moving upward. You need to be in the top of your field between 30 and 50. These are your peak earning years. And remember I said this, "Most problems go away when you throw money at them."


My thought of the day. I woke up this morning and remembered that in learning about cosmetics, women wear a lot of eye makeup when they feel self-confident. They wear a lot of lip makeup when they feel they need protection by men. Think Cleopatra. Ruled Egypt. Wore a lot of eye makeup. Think Marie Antionette. The world was falling apart, a little pink on your cheeks and lips.

Think the 19th century when women were incarcerated in girdles, hoopskirts, bustles, upholstery fabrics. No makeup except you pinched your cheeks and bit your lip to get a little bit of color. Maybe you rubbed a geranium petal on your lips if you were feeling daring. And men ran everything.

Now, suddenly, bright red lipstick has reappeared. And women are tottering around on the highest heels in history, making them very vulnerable and fragile. Like geisha on their clogs. Think about it. What does this tell us about where the world is going?

(Alexander McQueen heels worn by Lady Gaga)

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