Ming the Mechanic
The NewsLog of Flemming Funch

Monday, August 25, 2003day link 

 Work like you don't need money
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Work like you don't need money,
love like you've never been hurt,
and dance like no one's watching

I saw that in somebody's profile, and I'm sure I've seen it somewhere else before. And, hey, I'd like to think I live by that motto too.

I just haven't quite figured out the "Work like you don't need money part". To me it means to work on what you're inspired to do, to work on things that need doing. "Do what you love and money will follow" kind of thing. Except for that it isn't that simple.

I'm ready to believe the universe works that way. That you're inherently supported in doing what you're inspired to do. That when you feed energy to something, it becomes more real and viable.

But our economic system doesn't work that way. It isn't inherently based on supporting good things. It is to some degree based on scarcity and abundance. Because of the way money is created it is very much based, not on what is of value, but on what turns money into more money. So the point to making money is not so much producing something needed and valuable, but rather to manage to become part of a value chain that at some level produces more money than what is put into it. I.e. it matters not at all whether you're doing something totally useless if the big company you're working for is making money. It doesn't matter if your activities are good for anybody, as long as you have a contract or a relationship that compels somebody to give you money.

Doesn't mean it isn't possible. Some people manage to concentrate on what they actually want to do, and also be paid well for it, without having to worry about it. You can be an artist, a writer, a speaker, a consultant, a researcher, just doing what you like doing, in the way you want to do it. And others might notice that it is good and useful or desirable, and they will pay you for it.

And, yes, if you're good enough at what you're doing, and/or good enough at presenting yourself, that can very well translate into natural success in the money world too. But there's some kind of secret ingredient there. People who do so are usually either very confident about the ease with which they'll live, and good at compelling the universe to follow their lead. Or, their income is really from something entirely different than what they do now. It is a lot easier to be an inspired artist or philantropist or playboy if you have a trust fund, or the investments from selling your company 20 years ago, or the proceeds from that lawsuit you won, or whatever it is.

I'm looking for the real deal. The ability to dance to your own inner tune, to throw yourself into life, to live and love more fully, to do work that is there to do, that inspires and moves you. And for that to actually be a viable life style.

So, if it works like that for you, please tell me. And give us some hints.

There is another angle of interpreting it, of course, which I have indeed followed most of my life. It is that you might indeed pick a job for the money, but you'd work it like you didn't care about the money part. I have indeed found that I was most fulfilled and most useful if I did a given job the way I felt it needed to be done, no matter whether anybody agreed or whether I'd be likely be fired for doing it that way. In other words, do your work without fear. Do what is true for you within the circumstances where you find yourself.
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