You're More Than Your Career
Author: Mike Scaletti
It is exceptionally common for your sense of self worth to be tied closely to your job. We are taught our whole lives to work hard so that we can get and keep jobs that we are proud of. The thought of saying "I work for [employer]" or "I am a [job title]" can fill many with excitement. The bottom line though, is that for most people that is fool's gold. This is not to say that you shouldn't work hard, or try to find a great job that you love, however too many people stay in a job, ignoring burnout and lacking motivation, because they grow to crave the sense of acceptance they get from mentioning their "great" position in conversations.
At some point though, going through the motions or staying in a job that no longer makes you happy will catch up with you. Maybe you'll be let go, maybe something else will happen, but whatever it is, it should be a wake-up call for you to realize that your self-worth isn't defined by your job, but by your values, your truth, and what you do beyond the typical 9-to-5. For many, losing a job or leaving a job that you once dreamed of can be a devastating experience, and their confidence will take a hit. I'm here to tell you that while it might sting at first, it will make you realize how important it is to listen to your heart and not allow someone else to control your fate. Your career doesn't define your identity and the only approval you need is your own.
Here are five reasons why you shouldn't define yourself by your career or job:
A great job isn't the only measure of success.
Success is not just about working for a renowned company or having a high salary. True success is about doing something you love, caring for others, overcoming your fears, or finding happiness. Everyone's definition of success is different and that's okay. What matters is being true to yourself and not trying to live up to someone else's idea of success.
Your truths and values are what define you.
Why should we be judged based on our profession? When we meet someone new, we should focus on what they're passionate about, not just what they do for a living. Your identity should be defined by what you love, dream of, value, and cherish. Your true friends and family don't care about your job or salary, they care about your happiness. Prioritize your happiness over your job, paycheck, or boss.
Most jobs are temporary and can change at any moment.
While life is unpredictable, we often believe we have control over our circumstances. Today, maybe you're in a job you love now, but who knows what you'll want to do in four years. Life is full of surprises, and there are many things that can impact your life beyond your career.
Your job is something you do, not who you are.
Whether you're a cashier or an illustrator, these are just things you do. There are many other ways to identify yourself, especially if you're not happy with your job. You could be a parent, a kitty lover, a video game enthusiast - anything that you admire and ascribe value to is a part of your identity. You should be known for what you love to do, not what you do for work.
People remember you by how you make them feel, not your job.
How you treat others and express yourself is more important to your identity than your job. When people think of you, they will remember your personality and character, not just your career. The value that you bring to the world is far greater than the value you provide your employer. If you try to help others, make a difference in your community, or inspire others to do the same, even if it's just in small ways, then I guarantee you people will value you for it. Don't limit yourself by just identifying yourself by your career. Embrace your world and help others do the same. The more we realize we're more than our jobs, the happier and fulfilled we will become.
It's important to remember that your self-worth is not determined by your job or career. It's easy to get caught up in the idea of having a prestigious job or title, but that is only temporary and can change at any moment. Instead, focus on what truly matters - your values, your passions, and what brings you happiness.
Embrace your individuality and let your true self shine through. Don't be afraid to follow your heart and take a risk, even if it means stepping away from a job or career that no longer serves you. Your self-love and happiness is worth more than any paycheck or job title.