A lot of people tell me about their goals. Most of them want to quit their jobs and become something “bigger and better” than a nine-to-five. (hold on one sec, I just want to clarify that there is nothing wrong wanting to have a nine-to-five, but sometimes people don’t want it. If you love it, cool.)
But they never do it.
The comfort and stability of a nine-to-five or any set up with predictable ends jive with our biological wiring. In a way, our minds and bodies scream at us to not give this up or we’ll die!
In other words,
Except that the brain is wrong. Many people who have listened to their brains have found themselves in very fragile positions, both financially and emotionally.
I’ve met way too many 50 year olds who tell me, ‘Well, Lu Wee, you are so lucky to be doing what you’re doing now.The opportunities nowadays is so different. If I was still young, I would do it too.’
These folks are full of excuses. They basically wasted their entire lives in trying to stay safe and blaming their environment for ‘forcing’ them to make the choices they have made.
Please, it is not that we are more lucky nowadays. A person who I admire a lot, Ho Kwan Ping, founder of the chain Banyan Tree, lived in the same era as they did! How did he create such great things if opportunities were indeed lacking back then? He was even jailed before starting Banyan Tree.
Anyway, what I’m trying is that, we are gonna be 50 years old too one day. I think by then let’s not say this to the younger generation. We had our opportunities. If we were too scared to grab them and end up with regrets, then let’s blame ourselves, not the environment.
No need to quit your job though
I’m not saying you need to quit your job to do what you want. I’m saying… just do what you want. Don’t give in to your brain’s natural reflexes telling you that you will die if you try (spoiler: you won’t).
If you want to become a writer, then write before or after work. If you want to become a painter, then keep painting, every day.
The fear will always be there. But just keep going. By doing, you will end up much much further than you will ever be just thinking about doing it.
Don’t care too much about how good or bad you will be. It matters more that it is done, not perfect! Critics will always exist, but don’t stop just because someone tells you your work sucks (at least they saw it ;)).