Recently I was living for several years in India. Although the street life is very busy and noisy, I still felt the connection that the people had with their job. They’re making with love their chai, a spicy milk tea, took out all their nice colored tissue or repaired my bag on the market.
Surely I could also feel this connection because I could watch them close, working on the street or in a coffee bar where everybody can watch how the drinks are prepared. But the connection was there, they value the job they do and enjoy to offer you the best they have.
However a job is linked to the skill we have, the education we had, the simply fact of needing a job to survive and linked to the monetary system that we have in place. The surface might be nice, a shop full of nice garments, but behind people who’re not paid enough, insulted and working in dangerous buildings. Remember Dhaka in 2013 where 1.129 people died because the garment workers had to continue their work in a building with cracks.
Money drives us to insane things, industries always aiming for bigger profit, forgetting about human and animal rights and the consequences for the environment we and all future generations have to live in.
The bigger picture shouldn’t however drag us away from what the job we value and want to do today. Following our values in a job, can give a life more satisfying. We need money to live, but we need a lot more to really feel alive.
“Work is about a search for daily meaning as well as daily bread, for recognition as well as cash, for astonishment rather than torpor; in short, for a sort of life rather than a Monday through Friday sort of dying.” by Studs Terkel
Each moment we can decide to quit a job which doesn’t fit our values in life. Being sacked might be an awful event, but also an opportunity to seek something new which we value a lot more. The big step to take, can be guided by professionals, even on internet like the interesting coaching program of Scott Barlow. He offers a free mini-guide to analyze your strengths in your job and your main goals you want to achieve in life.
Learning to say no if we don’t value our job conditions
Even presidents took the step to live by their values. José Alberto “Pepe” Mujica Cordano was the president of Uruguay from 2010 to 2015. He donated however 90% of his presidential salary to charities that benefit poor people and small entrepreneurs. He decided to stay true to his values and continued his austere lifestyle.
He’s not the only president to refuse most of his salary. The new president of the U.S. Donald Trump declared on his presidential tour to refuse a salary, but with 3,7 billion dollars on his account, he might not miss the estimated 400.000 dollars a year. Also former presidents John F. Kennedy, Herbert Hoover and Barack Obama donated a part of their salary to charity.
Saying yes to what you feel is right and value
There are many stories of people who want to think differently about their job and money. Deciding to have a more simple life and thus needing less money, give less pressure to look for a well paid job and thus leaves more place to honor our values: more time for ourselves, our kids, being in nature, voluntary work or whatever might be important for you. Starting an independent business gives more independence and self-determination and is another option to say “yes” to your values in life.