It’s an unfortunate truth: we don’t all have the luxury of doing what we love all day, every day.
Some do, and that’s wonderful. The world needs more people who come fully alive and do what they love for the benefit of others as well as themselves. I support them wholeheartedly. But we can’t all do that. Some of us toil. Some of us put aside what we want to fulfill our obligations and make ends meet in a more expedient but less satisfactory fashion.
You have to remind yourself that this is okay.
There’s nothing wrong with committing to a bit of the old day-in day-out. Being as present as possible where you physically are can help make a better future for yourself. Employers like to see reliability and adaptability in their assets, and these attributes can make future employment opportunities easier to secure. From that perspective, putting aside other ambitious is a worthwhile sacrifice.
You also have to remind yourself not to give up.
Our dreams matter, and are worthy of being pursued. Having goals beyond the mundane day-to-day helps us see beyond the inbox, work through the frustations that come from tasks that ultimately have no real impact on us, and give us hope for the future. Our problems are temporary. To paraphrase Theodore Parker (who was himself paraphrased by Martin Luther King Jr), the curve of history is long but it bends towards justice. If you can hold onto what’s good in your life, and strive towards your goals even if your steps on that journey falter, you will see that your setbacks and failures do not matter anywhere near as much as your joyous occasions and your successes.
In the end, our measure is not truly taken in the unfortunate difficulties that hinder us and the oversights and mistakes we are bound to make. We’re going to get in our own way. We’re going to leave aside what we’ve put aside for the sake of our sanity and decompression. These are forgivable, human, and ultimately temporary conditions. If we keep moving forward, if we persevere, if we eventually reach that goal towards which we strive, all of the frustation and all of the shame and all of the despair will evaporate, and satisfaction is all that will be left.
Tomorrow will be a new day, no matter how badly today might go.
Try to remember that, especially when the days begin to turn sour. You can make it. And you will.
Until then, do what you gotta do.