My Life and Work

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What I Learned About Business. Starting The Real Business. Getting Into Production. Machines And Men. The Terror Of The Machine.

How To: Balance Life and Work

Money And Goods. Money—Master Or Servant? Why Be Poor? The Tractor And Power Farming. Why Charity? It's not like my job was changing.

Or so I thought. He was also being relocated to the new branch.


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We are being absorbed into a new department. By this time next month, you and I will have different jobs. They are restructuring the department to fit into the research and analytics team. I was devastated. Two weeks later, my creative team had moved offices and was absorbed into the analytics department. I tried to fight the decision, but it was too late. I moved to the new office with a box of personal items in my hands and my tail between my legs.

I was not happy. At all. If anything, the analytics team should be managed by the creative team. You can't make imagination part of an algorithm. What is wrong with these people? Their priorities are backwards.

Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse, I discovered that Joe was going to be my new boss. A notorious office asshole, Joe was not a leader by any stretch of the imagination.


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He was a manager. His management style resembled somebody trying to maximize the productivity of a sweatshop. Instead of encouraging his team to develop our talents, he did everything he could to instill fear in the hearts of his employees. Machiavelli would have been proud. Fear produces reactionary thinking; trust produces creative thinking.

My Choices, My Work, My Life – A free publication for Albertans – alis

In order for creativity to bloom, the mind must be free. But my new environment was founded on a philosophy of scarcity and fear. Imagination is a luxury we can't afford. For the first time in my life, I felt like my mind had been imprisoned. Energy drained from my body like a leaky faucet. I was trapped. My talents were at the mercy of analytics reports.

When the left brain is considered king, the right brain becomes the jester. I felt like a joke. Putting the creative team in the control of a results-driven analytics department was, I felt, symbolic of the destructive workplace values around the world. My company and, in many ways, the capitalist system itself was trying to force the creative process to work like an assembly line. Input data, output results, repeat. The problem is, creativity doesn't work that way. Society often attempts to cram imagination into places where it doesn't fit, like shoving a circular block into a triangular hole.

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In doing so, purpose is usually replaced with profits. Inspiration is reduced to the lowest billable dollar amount. The pursuit of our personal purpose and truth should be the reason we show up to work. Working with purpose should never be a luxury - it should be non-negotiable.

But is it easy? In the chase for quick results, we often forget the dreams that inspired us before we started our career. We show up to work uninspired. Clock in; check out. Besides, creativity and dreams are for children. I have bills to pay and things to buy.

Henry Ford Autobiography ~ My Life and Work

It would be nice to find a career that aligned with my life purpose, but that's not realistic. Your Higher Self knows better. Your career will become more meaningful to the same degree that you reveal your inner truth to others. Your job is a place to learn from others, and also to teach them. What you learn and teach are more than merely job skills. You learn from others the value of shared humanity. And you teach them the gift of your unique perspective. This value exchange is unseen, but is the true purpose of work. There was a time when children became adults by going on a spiritual journey.

This tradition symbolized official entrance into the tribal community. For example, in some Native American cultures, children who reached a certain age would embark on a Vision Quest. A Vision Quest was a rite of passage that required the child to journey into the wilderness, usually alone, for several days.

How To: Balance Life and Work

The objective was for the child to establish a deep connection to both the natural world and the inner self. Upon return from the Vision Quest, the child was empowered with a sense of personal vision, and therefore ready to fulfill their role within the tribe. Today, we usually enter society on a quest with no vision. Our wilderness is not the forest, but the office building. Our guide is not the inner self, but college degrees and internships. Instead of days spent alone in contemplation, we stare desperately into computer screens with the same intensity that Native American seekers looked into the wilderness, hoping to find an answer in the light of the screen.

We don't always like it. But it pays the bills, so we keep showing up. The stress of the modern workday often leaves us feeling stuck. So to get to authenticity, you really keep going down to the bone, to the honesty, and the inevitability of something. My art is an attempt to reach beyond the surface appearance. I want to see growth in wood, time in stone, nature in a city, and I do not mean its parks but a deeper understanding that a city is nature too-the ground upon which it is built, the stone with which it is made.

Both the grand and the intimate aspects of nature can be revealed in the expressive photograph. Both can stir enduring affirmations and discoveries, and can surely help the spectator in his search for identification with the vast world of natural beauty and the wonder surrounding him. My aim in painting is to create pulsating, luminous, and open surfaces that emanate a mystic light, in accordance with my deepest insight into the experience of life and nature.

I was not ready for abstraction. I clung to earth and her dear shapes, her density, her herbage, her juice.