“Would you tell me which way I ought to go from here?” asked Alice.
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get,” said the Cat.
“I really don’t care where” replied Alice.
“Then it doesn’t much matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
– Quote from the Alice in Wonderland Movie
My brother called me the other day and asked me for some advice? He was trying to decide between two job offers:
Job 1 – The first job was your typical 40 hour a week “office” job.
Job 2 – The second job was more of a career in the insurance industry, where he would start at the bottom, and after many years and many long hours eventually rise to the top (if he was good). The second job did not pay as well as the first job (initially), but the potential pay-off of the second job was much greater than the first job.
So which job should my brother take? Well the answer is…it depends.
Just like the Cat was trying to tell Alice, which road you take depends a great deal on where you want to end up.
Begin with the End in Mind
I asked my brother what was his life’s purpose. He said his purpose is to “teach,” but he wants to make a lot of money first.
I told my brother to forget about the money, and I advised him to focus on his purpose.
I then asked him which job best supports his end result of “teaching.” He said the first job best supports his goal because he would only have to work 40 hours a week, which would give him spare time to teach.
He continued on to say, but if I take job number two, I can work hard and make more money, then I can retire early and “teach” later in life. I again advised him to “focus” on his purpose, not money.
I cautioned him to think this process through carefully because things don’t end wrong, they begin wrong!
You Can’t Ride Two Horses Well
It would be very difficult to have a successful teaching career while you’re working 70-80 hours a week in the insurance business; no one can ride two horses well. As they say, you can do anything, but not everything.
I recommended to my brother that he dedicate his time to achieving his life’s purpose, and I advised him to get started today by choosing the job that best supports that decision.
Tomorrow Never Comes
My brother was thinking that he could always start teaching later in life, but the reality is, tomorrow never comes.
Unless you decide right now to pursue your passions, they will probably never be fulfilled. They will always be postponed until some nebulous time in the future. You will eventually “miss out” in the one area where you could have had the greatest impact on the world.
You only live once, don’t go to your grave with one regret; don’t postpone your purpose.
The Money Will Come
My brother seemed to be overly concerned with making money. I told him not to be anxious about making money. The fear of not making money is the quickest way not to make it.
You will always have greater money making potential when you’re doing what you love.
In conclusion, whenever you’re at a cross-road, be sure to make the decision that best supports the overall mission and goal of your life. If you do, then you will be well on your way.
What advice would you have given my brother? What are some other cross-roads where this advice would be applicable?
About the author: this guest post was written by Mr. Self Development. For more information please visit Mr. Self Development at mrselfdevelopment.com; Mr. Self Development is a motivational author that offers a practical guide to success and wealth.
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