“Our last question is perhaps the most contentious: To what extent does the economy provide opportunities for work that are meaningful? Is it written in stone that most jobs must involve hateful activities that drain the creativity and humanity out of people who do them? Or can we envision an economy where work validates the inherent dignity of every human being?”
— Barker & Feiner, Liberating Economics
Tyler and I often chat about work. Not necessarily in the “how was your day?” sense, but rather the meaning of work and how it structures every aspect of our society today. I found the above quote particularly meaningful to our conversations, and I liked that it brought attention to the type of work that is considered “important” [or not] in our economy.
Tyler is a musician–it is his passion and what he hopes will be his “career.” I say this with quotations because most people today do not see this as a real “job”–just a hobby. It’s unfortunate that our society places more emphasis and more importance on the monetary outcomes of working rather than on the intellectual or fulfilling outcomes one can achieve by following a true passion, regardless of money or status.
It also scares me a bit because my whole adult life, I have been following the path towards achieving a successful career; graduating college, participating in clubs and activities, completing internships and finally securing a job. I never actually thought about a specific passion, idea or dream that I wanted to follow. Sure there were definitely sparks of interest in lots of different things, but nothing that translated into a clear picture of who I wanted to be or of what I wanted to “do.”
I’m still figuring it out. I already know that this space will be a mess of thoughts that don’t always seem to belong to the same mind. But it is a space for me to be creative, a safe haven for sanity.