What About A Side Hustle?
The last few weeks I have been noticing a repeat in my thought process; should I look for another job while running my small business? For the first time in months, I have started to develop alternate interests with probably a ridiculous amount of ambition to work while running my shop. I believe this idea surfaced as a result of finally having the opportunity to stop and think about where I was heading with my career. How many of us in the "day in day out" ask this question, "am I doing what my heart truly desires or am I spinning the cog of a larger wheel?"
As most of you are aware, I am 100% up and online, no longer in the bricks, which makes all of the "side hustle" chatter quite possible. So, the next and even grander question is, "What would I do?" I decided to list the occupations I have had in my lifetime to discover a common thread in what I have chosen as jobs these last several years (brief sub-note here: occupations refers to serious positions not babysitting, day camps and hostess jobs which epitomizes my teenage employment years)
What I discovered was truly amazing. I essentially have chosen different positions, but, all share the same heartfelt desire to work with people. Whether teaching, counselling, business development (sales) or buying my own business, each one of these highlights a deep desire to serve others. It brought me to the next question, should I do something radically different or remain on the "safe side" of things and love what I already know I'm good at? To answer this, I needed to reflect on the last eight years of running my retail business. I discovered that I reached a level of "burn out" that I hadn't known from any other job I had held before. Taking on something new this time in my life would mean a serious commitment to balance between business and personal.
This brings me to the next question, is it really the nature of the job that brings self-worth to the individual or the position itself that offers a person its dignity? The late great Pope St. John Paul II once said:
"Man’s (person's) life is built up every day from work, from work it derives its specific dignity."
To me this quote means there is meaning to your work. Do we truly live/work by the motto "It's not what you do that matters, it is who you are that does." Do we truly live/work by that motto? The "daily grind" gets its name for a reason in society. St. John Paul goes on to state:
"A person's life is built up not broken down by work".
Can there be more than just "working to live?" I believe there can be, and the way one views what he/she does is precisely the key. There were many days I sat in an empty "bricks and mortar" store wondering if the few card sales were worth my time. After all, I had a full house load of kids and an aging parent I had to tend to after I closed up. Yet, my exchange with those few folks was often more than just a transaction. Lending a listening ear about kids, health challenges, financial worries and so on, exemplified for me what truly being human was about. Essentially it confirmed that we are more than just what we do. If in our work we seek to serve others, we are raised to a level of worth and value that transcends what the job is; whether serving as a barista or putting on scrubs to operate, you can derive the same dignity from doing both.