Today I have a great post for you from the lovely Sarah of dodeline design. Thanks Sarah!
It’s a sweltering summer day in August of 2009. I’m happily at the counter of a busy little picture framing shop, helping customers make their selections from the thousands of mats and frames adorning the walls.
Enjoying some friendly small talk but dreading the moment when I have to tell them how expensive that real-mahogany-veneer frame they just love is going to cost.
And then a high school friend’s mother walks in. And I have that sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach.
“Wow, haven’t seen you in awhile? So-and-so is in law school, what are YOU doing?”
Well, uh, let’s see. I went to college on a full scholarship and surprised everyone by getting an Art degree. And then I thought it would be a good plan to graduate in the worst recession in decades, so now I work part-time for just above minimum wage. I’m a professional resume-sender. That’s what I’m doing.
——————–have you ever been there?——————–
It’s stupid really. We identify ourselves so strongly with our job titles, and at that point in my life, I was crushed at the world that awaited me after graduating from college. First in my family to go to college, went into debt to get there, and how stupid did I look now – I wasn’t any better off than my friends who didn’t go to school.
But you know what? It was the best thing that ever happened to me. For lack of a better way to put it, I needed to CHECK THAT ATTITUDE.
So much of it is tied up in confidence. I was looking to derive my self confidence from a job title or a paycheck instead of from my own character.
Your identity is not your job. Your identity is your passion, your personality, the things that make you laugh and the things that make you cry.
That’s what I’ve learned in my – gasp – almost two years out of college. Whether you’re an entrepreneur or an artist or a 9-to-5-er, it doesn’t matter: just be sure that you work on yourself, that you aren’t so tied up in the title or the numbers that you don’t have an identity otherwise.
I am happier than I’ve ever been. I love the look on people’s faces when they say, “What do you do for a living?” and I can say…exactly what I want to do.