I’ve been thinking a lot recently about my life. And something came to mind that I read once. I don’t remember the exact quote, or where I read it but it was something about people generally being nouns when the world needed verbs. (Bear with me).
What I took this to mean was that people generally lived their lives with things being done to them rather than taking control and doing things themselves. No doubt there are other interpretations – not least that the person who said it had had a drink or two too many! 🙂
But thinking about it, I think it is true and I’m living proof!
When I first started work after University, like a lot of hopeful, shiny new graduates, I came to London. I had accepted a job on a graduate career programme which did not excite me but as I was brought up with a strong work ethic, I didn’t think that mattered. I started the daily commute on the London Underground. At that time, I had to use the Northern Line, which is actually over ground on the outskirts of London and “goes underground” after Golders Green. I never got a seat and always stood in the same carriage and braced myself against the adjoining carriage.
Every day I got up, followed exactly the same routine as the day before and caught the tube. Every day I felt a sinking feeling hit me as that tunnel approached when the sunlight was extinguished from the train as it entered the underground network. Day in, day out, the same thing. Then one day as the doors closed at Golders Green and the train entered the tunnel I remember thinking “Is this all there is for the rest of my life?”
This shook me to the core.
I had entered the corporate world thinking they wanted the bright, young thing, energetic and active. A doer. A verb. But within months they had knocked all enthusiasm out of me. With their attitudes and way of doing things, it was clear what they actually wanted was another corporate cog – I had become a noun.
This had happened so gradually I hadn’t even noticed! That’s when I started looking for another job! I took action.
And it’s the same for any business, offline or online. I’m not saying that sticking with the status quo is wrong; many people live very happy and decent lives doing just that. But if you are not happy, the harsh truth is that you need to do something. I’ll say that again. If you want to live the life you dream of, rather than the life that is dealt to you, you have to do something about it.
I’m still striving for my perfect life, but it’s closer now than it’s ever been and getting closer by the month! Be a verb. Do it your way and don’t give up until you get there.