I am an introvert working in a extrovert world.
It’s not weird I find it hard to have work I love. Because the corporate work conditions are not suited for me. It’s suited for the extrovert people.
Why is this so?
1. Introverts makes up only 25 – 30 % of the total population.
2. Many introverts are idealistic, which means that they have a clear picture of what they want to be true in their own minds. This picture does more seldom than not, reconcile with reality.
3. Every introvert I know wants to do meaningful, purposeful work. They’re not content to clock in, create a predetermined number of widgets, collect a paycheck, and wake up to do the same thing again the next morning. This kind of existence is a slow death for an introvert. In contrast, they want to do work that utilizes their core gifts to help people.
4. At the same time introverts needs to feel safe and comfortable. That’s why I can’t quit my job suddenly, because I won’t be
happy doing work I love if I am struggling to get by financially. To become financial independent makes perfectly sense to most introverts because it offers both the financial safety and the time to do meaningful, purposeful work.
How I keep motivation to stay in the rat race
Meeting my basic needs
In order to free up my creativity and insight, I need to be able to put food on the table and pay for a roof over my head. Scrimping and scraping to get by will leave me drained and stressed out.
It’s for this reason that I am in a job that allows me to pay the bills. This is also the reason that I don’t quit my job without a stable income in backhand.
I also think that the job is an okey fit for my personality. There is of course meaningless meetings, chit chat with co-workers and other things that drain my energy, but overall it’s decent. For now, eventually.
For 3 years now I have worked as an engineer/project manager. It’s a good job for me in a lot of ways, albeit not the best fit.
While many days I feel frustrated that I can’t have more time to myself to write, read and work on creative projects, I’m
immensely thankful that I actually have a job.
Even if I whine about my job a lot on this blog, the job has been important for me. I’ve learned a lot about my self, eg. public speaking, leadership and how to write better. This is characteristics that I deeply value, and that will come in handy even if I find out that I will quit my job in some years.
I am thankful for having a job that is meeting my basic needs, and that pays me enough to follow this path to financial independence. That is not something you should take for granted!
Working on my side projects
In my opinion, the best way to bridge the gap between paying the bills and doing work you love that pays the bills is to hustle on the side.
This is the way to make your creative side projects your business – or land a job doing what you love to do.
I got a side huste. This blog. Unfortunately I’m not earning a dime on it, but it doesn’t matter.
All of the time I invest working in off hours is not a waste; it’s training me and helping me develop the skills and abilities I’ll need to do
work I love.
I love to write. To connect with other bloggers. To read people’s stories.
Actually I don’t care about the money, because I love doing this for free.
I learn more about my self and finally feel that I’m a part of something bigger.
The FI community is really supportive!
Tracking and sharing the journey underway keeps me motivated.
Working on the blog energizes and revitalize me, and it’s essential to persevering in my full-time work.
Some hours every week to work on my passions is essential for my well being.
I know I could not have survived without creative times.
Quit now or make a smooth transition?
I mentioned that I haven’t earned a dollar on my blog.
I believe people who jump from jobs they don’t fully enjoy into the unknown are setting themselves up for unnecessary stress.
If you on the other hand stay in your day job while working on your side hustle you have longed to pursue, you are making the transition easier.
When you jump from a boring day job to nothing you fail to acquire the skills you need to make the transition. When you stick it out at your day job and hustle on the side, however, you give yourself time to acquire the skills you’ll need.
The struggle changes you into the person you need to become for your new position, and for that reason, the struggle itself is invaluable.
Make a plan that doesn’t involve quitting your day job. While you pursue work that pays the bills, you may often end up unhappy or dissatisfied. Many have to settle for an unsatisfying job in order to meet their basic needs, so they find themselves doing work that’s humdrum and unfulfilling.
While their physical needs are being met, their emotional and psychological ones go unfulfilled. In this situation, it’s easy to want to jump ship and try to transition to a better tomorrow without having anything solid to jump to.
Do your best to avoid this. It’s probably not wise to leave a steady job for an uncertain future. A hasty transition may be unwise because it doesn’t allow you time to build up the skills you need to do other work.
If you hustle on the side for some years, though – despite it being painful – your efforts will build up your skills, and you’ll become the person you need to be in order to make the transition into your new, more satisfying line of work.
My point is that while I would love to quit my job right now, I believe it is wiser to stick out with my day job for some more years while I work on this blog and other side hustles. There is two reasons to why I believe that.
First and foremost; I don’t have enough money to leave the corporate world yet. I could take the chance and quit now, but as I have briefly described, I think I would put my self under an enormous pressure which may have ended badly.
Second: Maybe I wouldn’t enjoy so much free time either? I belive in a smooth transition. I think I’ll start with cutting five work days down to four, and then four down to three. Perhaps three days of work and four days of working on my passion projects is the ideal combination?
Explore unconventinal options
You may find a job you enjoy as a counselor, engineer, psychologist, educator eg., but it’s also true that no job will give
you the freedom that your own business will.
When you start your own blog for example, you get to set the standards and build it the way you want it to run.
For a long time, when I was looking for jobs that fit me, I read job description after job description and never found anything that fit. As my disappointment mounted, I eventually heard about index investing and escaping the 9 – 5. The FI community opened my eyes to the world of online business possibillities .
Over the last year, I continued to learn how to make it happen. Now, as I continue to work my engineering job, I’m hustling on the side to eventually launch a new career when the time is right.
Most likely I won’t earn much money on this blog, but I believe it makes me a better writer. The blog also makes me think deeper about subjects and learn more, as well as connect with like-minded people. For me that’s invaluable and more worth than money.
I believe this blog and the people I meet along the way will shape me in a way, and make me take new directions in life.
Whatever you do, be willing to think outside the box. There are more options in today’s world than there ever were before. It’s likely, then, that your best options may be ones that you haven’t heard of or that you don’t know much about.
Investigate and explore them.
Expect to meet resistance
If and when you do choose to go an unconventional route, such as blogging, expect to meet resistance.
People will tell you that it won’t work out or question your decision because they’ve never seen it done before. That doesn’t mean that what you’re doing can’t or won’t work out. Remember that you have an amazing ability to envision the future and a potential business and to see it become a reality.
Other people won’t be able to share your vision until it’s realized, so be careful not to let their criticism deter you. Heed their insights
when they’re helpful, but ignore whatever words are hurtful and take the wind out of your sails.
Also, recognize that your dreams won’t become reality overnight. In fact most overnight successes were ten years in the making. No one recognizes the hustle that went on behind the scenes for so long. It takes work to make your business a lasting success, but the final result is definitely worth the effort.
Realize as well that, though the work may be slow going in nature, most of us “overestimate what we can do in one year and underestimate what we can do in ten years”.
Be true to yourself and your vision, despite what other people say. You will be happiest when you are true to yourself.
Remember that you’re not alone in this world.
There is plenty of people that is just like you.
You are original, unique, and needed in this world.
You have a gift.
Your gift is needed in the world.