12th February 2011, in Highlights, News/Blog ( Comments)
“I Have a Day Job.”
At first, this was a perceived liability. It is becoming a hidden strength.
- A Day Job means I’m not desperate for business.
- A Day Job also means I’m not a wealthy guy “playing” at running a company.
- A Day Job means that somewhere out there, someone else trusts me to do their work for them.
In a field where your portfolio and your professionalism mean everything, being able to say “I need to get back to you after I get home from the Day Job” is lending me credibility I wouldn’t have alone. This can’t hold true forever, of course. But in this new venture, it’s a boon.
Not everyone would agree. In his famous self-help book, The War of Art, Steven Pressfield makes a strong case for becoming a Professional. “Professional” here means a “pro” at anything, and doesn’t necessarily represent established Service Professions (Doctor, Lawyer, Waiter, etc). Pressfield looks at “Amateurs” with disdain, saying (in so many well-written words) that pursuing a venture “on the side” is the coward’s way. If you were serious, you’d dive right in.
Inspiring words, no? I remember reading them in my apartment in college.
This thesis — that success comes to the most dedicated among us, and that failure is a function of a lack of dedication — struck me. In spirit, it’s true. Motivation alone has taken me quite far.
But the thesis is an ideal. One that can fit neatly into a 165-page book. It ignores the vagaries of “real life” — those variables that make the world unfair, no matter how much you try.
(A sappy self-help message brought to you by 60 Works.)