FLASHBACK! KEW Episode 60: The Are vs Should Problem – Jobs and Careers

Do you love your job? Are you happy with your career?

Many of us will answer no to both of these questions.

And it seems to me we visit these questions at two key moments in life:

  1. When we leave the nest, usually around 18 years old
  2. Sometime in midlife when we wonder how we got there. Maybe between 40 and 50 years old

Lucky for me, I’m almost 50 AND I have daughters who are 18 and 19. So I’m having my own moment and simultaneously and vicariously experiencing my daughters respective moments.

And it’s so messed up.

We put so much pressure on ourselves to balance our happiness with our financial comfort.

We measure safety in dollars.

We reduce possibility by focusing so narrowly on vocation.

And I get it. You gotta have money.

And, to some degree or another, money translates to safety, comfort, and happiness.

But also it doesn’t.

How many people do you know who are truly happy with their job or career AND their personal lives.

It’s like these things have become mutually exclusive.

As I watch my kids struggle with the ‘what do I want to do with my life‘ questions(s) I am saddened.

It’s like they’ve already conceded that their lives are going to suffer because they will pursue a job that makes them feel safe and financially secure.

I can see the sacrifices they have yet to make.

One daughter appears less constrained by the American Dream. More open to discovering her own way. I hope it lasts.

And I wish the other daughter could have a bit more of this . . . . naïveté? Belief? Hope?

Whatever it is, I wish we didn’t do this to our children. To ourselves.

In this Episode I explore why we do these things and hopefully provide some hope that we can do things differently and be more open minded about what makes a good life.

Original post here: https://chrisburcher.com/2021/08/27/kew-episode-60-the-are-vs-should-problem-jobs-and-careers/

Preview KEW Episode 45: Career vs. Family

Many of us struggle with the amount of time we spend working on our career vs. time we spend with our family. For those pursuing demanding careers we fear we are missing out at home, and some of us who spend most of our time at home long to have a purpose beyond our families. Whether are assumptions are accurate, or our guilt is warranted remains largely unseen because career demands seem to trump our other needs (see Episode 32 Work/Life Balance for more general information about this topic). Regardless, MANY of us wish we could spend less time at work to free up more time to spend with the people that we love. And NOT being able to do this creates a lot of stress.

Careers are extremely demanding, and it seems like the higher the salary, the higher the demands on our time. We believe we have to earn these high salaries to provide for our families and many of us have the best intentions when choosing to work more than we’d like. But we question whether it is all ‘worth it’ in the end. As we age the value of all the work and all the money often comes into question and we miss more and more life events in the pursuit of wealth.

But what do we do? How do we ‘balance’ career/money with family/happiness?

This week I ponder that specific subset of the work/life balance question.

Preview video here: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=774110389886463

Full episode this Friday.

FLASHBACK! KEW Episode 15: Rat Racer

If you’re part of the Rat Race, you’re a Rat Racer! And maybe you’re doing really well. Winning, even. But even if you win, like Lily Tomlin said, you’re still a Rat.

That’s how I have felt during the 35 years I’ve been working. Even when I got my ‘dream job’ as a professor, I still felt the pressure to win the Rat Race. Even now that I’m trying to do my own thing, and figure out what other options there are besides the Rat Race, I feel the tug.

Though this episode is from summer 2020, I am currently exploring alternatives to the Rat Race. Or, more accurately, alternatives to the money, fame, and power that you can win in the Rat Race. That’s the pull, after all, isn’t it?

What if we valued things above money, fame, and power? Like, loving relationships, intelligence, curiosity . . . money will always be important, but what if there were other things to win that were recognized as meaningful to all?

More on that later this week. For now here’s a look back at why the Rat Race sucks.

Preview video here: https://chrisburcher.com/2020/07/31/kew-episode-15-rat-racer/

Full episode links here: https://chrisburcher.com/2020/07/31/kew-episode-15-rat-racer/

KEW Episode 32: Work/Life Balance

Have you ever felt like a slave to the 40 hour workweek? I know I never signed up for that, but I learned early on that to do the fun stuff I want to do I have to work for money to do it. Sure, I’ve had some hippie friends who tried a different tactic, and I even tried to pretend I could live on very little if I just didn’t spend much. But, yeah, then I got married and had kids and, well, you know the story. Work is a 4-letter word for many of us, but the j-o-b pays the bills. We end up spending a lot of time working, and if the job sucks, it affects the rest of our life and cuts into our limited ‘me’ time to do all that fun stuff. Hell, a lot of us have so little free time that we kind of give up on the whole ‘life’ thing.

But I BELIEVE we can attain a work/life balance; do the fun stuff we want to do. Exercise. Meditate. Contemplate our naval. That stuff’s important – it’s part of being human. So we gotta learn to deal with the work side, either by tolerance, minimization, but also in learning to take advantage of what little time we have leftover to live our lives.

So here I talk a bit about people I’ve known and different approaches to balance. From maximizing work and making large bank, to combining work and life to ‘live your passion’, and some random ideas I came up with during the recording processes. Hope you enjoy and best of luck doing your own delicate balancing acts!

Podcast audio here: https://pdcn.co/e/https://chtbl.com/track/CGDA9D/www.buzzsprout.com/530563/6660343-kew-episode-32-work-life-balance.mp3?blob_id=27948676&download=true or via your favorite podcast app.

Video here on my YouTube channel: https://youtu.be/K9J0KWriUr8