Jobs, money, and the formula of success [Day 24 of Thankfulness]

by - Thursday, March 17, 2016

currently: listening to 'Cool' by Gwen Stefani


I've got friends who I'd always say were really successful. They're the same age as me, have shared many of the same classes as me, and are smart, confident people.

But why did I consider them more successful? Because I knew they earn twice as much as I do.

I've never had massive career dreams to be the head of my own company or be the CEO of something/anything. My career dreams were pretty simple- I wanted to be a job where I could be a writer. Whether that was being an author, being an editor, or being a journalist. They all generally fell down the same branch.

But sometimes I'll hear what my friends earn in their illustrious, well-paid career paths and I'd think 'Wow, I wish I could make money like they do'.

I once told this to a co-worker; about how at 24-years-old, I've got these amazing, successful friends moving up in life with their career goals and important positions. "Their jobs are making an important difference to society," I said.

"Hey!" He retorted. "Your job is important too."

"Oh I know..." I try to backtrack, thinking I had offended him. "But I'm not necessarily helping to make the world function day-to-day or saving lives."

"You help to make people happy and you get to do awesome stuff. How is that not important?"

Well, I couldn't really think of what to say after that. But I took time to think about what he meant. I may have thought the measure of success depended on the value of my paycheck, but it doesn't mean money equals success.

I remember someone once telling me that they moved jobs looking for more money, and while at the time the dollar value seemed like the best decision, she ended up hating her day-to-day job. "Money isn't everything. You can always make money," she said.

So now, It's worth making sure I can find my own success in the things I do, bigger than the dollars and cents that drive the rest of the world. Life experience, personal achievements, and making people happy? That surely is a success in itself.

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I'm writing 31 personal stories about things in my life I'm thankful for. See all my posts during my month of thankfulness here.

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