“When you find something you like, stick with it.” This is what an inspirational older man told me the other day, when I asked him how he was able to work for the same two companies for 50 years and stay married for 35 years. Seems simple enough, right? You like your job? Stick with it. You like your spouse? Stick with him/her. But, to me, that seemed outlandish at the time. Today, in many industries, people hop from job to job every five years, and even spouses and partners. I used to joke that when you meet someone new, you create a “lease” with him that will expire after five years. If you want to renew it, you can. But, otherwise, you’re good. Move on.
I think I’ve developed this sort of transient mentality over the years, having changed careers and cities many times. I’m also divorced. I did have long term relationships (8 years, 7 years, 5 years), but none that have lasted 35 years. Well, I mean, I would have been dating someone at age 10 if that were the case. Interesting to note: my boyfriend now is someone I met when I was 10. Hm… is this a sign?
Anyhow, I got to thinking that this man’s statement about sticking with things you like is simple, yet very complex. For some of us, it’s not so easy. Tenacity and perseverance are not necessarily attributes consistent with today’s fast-paced culture. Our attention spans are limited, we use technology to elicit immediate results, and we strive for more, more, more. Sticking with something seems lackluster, or not ambitious–complacent.
BUT, there is merit to it, I think, and something to aspire to. “Wherever you go, there you are.” That’s another saying. No matter where you move, what new job you start, what relationship you begin, you are still YOU (well, unless you undergo dramatic changes with therapy). I have learned this. Thing is, I’m essentially the same person I was when I was, like, 28. Oh, how I long to be 28 physically as well! But, yeah, I’m the same old, same old; and, now, just old.
I am going to take note from this man. From now on, I am STICKING WITH IT, IF I LIKE IT! YES! No need to think of bigger and better. Just BE.
Sounds easy enough, but can we do it? I hope to.