How to Find Fulfilling Work


The idea that work might be fulfilling, rather than just painfully necessary, is a strikingly recent invention. Open Dr. Johnson’s celebrated dictionary, published in 1755, and the word fulfillment doesn’t even appear. Nowadays in a prosperous world, we don’t only expect to obtain money through our labor, we also, to a greater or lesser extent, expect to find meaning and satisfaction. It’s a big ask and helps to explain why so many of us have career crises often on a Sunday evening as the Sun begins to set. To help us on the quest for fulfilling work here are six useful ideas: Firstly, accept the being confused about careers is perfectly normal. In a pre-industrial world there were, at most, some 2,000 different trades out there; nowadays there’ are estimated to be half a million different options. The result: we can become so anxious about making the wrong choice, we end up making no choice at all; psychologists call this “the paradox of choice”, paralysis stemming from too many options. We should acknowledge that confusion is natural, and fear entirely normal; but let neither of these scupper our chances forever. Secondly, know yourself. It’s the oldest philosophical recommendation, and has particular relevance to careers. For 99% of us knowing what we want to do doesn’t arise spontaneously; like for example, knowing what to eat. Most of us don’t have a calling; we don’t hear a commanding god like voice directing us to accountancy, or packaging and distribution. That isn’t to say we don’t have taste or inclinations, we just don’t know them clearly enough, which is a perilous position to be in, as not having a plan quickly puts us at the mercy of those who do have one. We only catch glimpses, little hints of our tastes. So what we have to do is learn to pick up on their faint sounds: start by parking any concerns for money for a time; financial panic too often kills all dialogue with the more authentic, passionate sides of one’s nature. Write down, without being too logical or analytical about it, everything you’ve ever enjoyed doing or making, which might include building a tree-house, or sorting out the winter clothes. The weirder and more offbeat list, the better. In the long and confused tangle that follows there will, somewhere, be the shape of an ideal future working self, but it’ll be very messed up, and in need of being analyzed thoroughly That’s where philosophy comes in; Philosophy is the art clearing up, and demanding logic of our first thoughts. Thirdly, think a lot. If it might take a couple of days, even a week, to choose a new car, it could, fairly, take a year or more of sustained daily reflection to start to identify a career that fits. We tend to feel guilty about this: imagining we’re being self-indulgent-far from it; we may need to empty every weekend for months to sort out the biggest conundrum of our lives. To make sure we don’t continue to spend the rest of our lives trapped in a job unwittingly chosen for us by our unknowing 16 year old selves, we need to be properly generous about the amount of time we’ll need to give this. Fourthly, try something It’s tempting to imagine we’ll be able to work out the shape of the workplace, and of our own characters simply through pure process of reflection, but we need data, and we can only understand ourselves and others by colliding with the real world, in the process getting to know both it and our own natures. We need to take small, non-irrevocable steps to gather information, for example by: shadowing, interning, or volunteering. We mustn’t think we always have to resign on Monday; we can investigate our futures through branching projects on the side of existing jobs. Five, reflect on what makes people unhappy. Every successful business is at heart an attempt to solve someone else’s problem; the bigger and more urgent problem, the greater the opportunity. To flex your entrepreneurial muscles, consider an average day and everything in it that might make someone unhappy: from losing the house keys, to finding the food a little greasy, to arguing yet again with their spouse. Each of these is a business opportunity waiting to be exploited; it’s a chance for us to serve, which is what work really is. It’s easy to imagine that everything’s been done and tried- nonsense; we’re unhappy enough for capitalism to have many more centuries of invention and creativity to it. Six, be confident. So many bad self help books are about confidence; it can be tempting to dismiss the whole topic as nonsense; but in a peculiar and rather humbling way, it really does seem as if the difference between success and failure is sometimes nothing less than the courage to give it a go. The ability to imagine oneself into a role, to surmise one doesn’t need to ask anyone for permission that many of the top positions simply belong to those who dare to boldly ask for them. A lack of confidence is at heart a misunderstanding of the way the world works; it’s an internalized feudalism which imagines that only certain people but not oneself, have the right, preordained, to get certain things. It isn’t true. As we know, a lot more is possible than we might think at our moments of timidity and doubt. That’s a start of the path towards a job we won’t regret on our death beds, which should always be the ultimate criterion.

100 thoughts on “How to Find Fulfilling Work”

  1. Paradox of choice – limit consumer option to encourage adoption Not having a plan puts us at the mercy of those that do have a plan. Think a lot – take the time to think and discuss ideas. To find opportunity, reflect on what makes people unhappy Every successful business is at its heart an attempt to solve someone else’s problem. Work is a chance to serve. Be confident and live without regrets.

  2. thank you so much i was caged in this idea of how can i lose 3 years of studies in networking and computer sience , working in something that i dont enjoy in is sooo exhausting , i really konw what i want to do but i have lot s of fear of failure of my family s opinion btu i m gonna try no matter what thanks

  3. I got stuck on step two. “Start by parking financial fears for a time.” Easier said than done.

    Make a video about how to do that please. Maybe for once I’ll chill out and actually get ahead.

    😪

  4. The work we do depends to a great extent on pure fortune.
    If securing work depends on making someone like you, then if you've spent most of your life self sabotaging, you ain't going to fare well there are you!

  5. Hell, I am scared that tech will kill most of the jobs
    Well, anyway, I'm scared of almost anything, I got that bad negative look at everything.
    Need to clean this, or at least learn how to deal with it.

  6. no, no, and no. Look at how people from privileged backgrounds dominate all the more interesting and fruitful careers from medicine and law to politics, journalism, acting and even pop music. Look at how social mobility has ground to a halt in the 21st century. Look at the subtleties of class barriers in the UK, the almost complete lack of black people in white-collar jobs, and the lack of women in boardrooms. To do an internship you're going to need free food and accommodation as there's no way you'll be able to have a 'regular job on the side' as this video suggests. This video really is total bollocks.

  7. It's also important to acknowledge that we don't spend our lives "trapped in one job" any longer. I recommend that if you are doing career exploration or planning that you read the Foundation for Young Australia's report "The New Work Mindset" which redirects focus from one job or one industry to "clusters" – groups of jobs with similar transferable skills. Most peoples' careers are actually very varied, complex, diverse and non-linear, which is reflected in this report.

  8. God uses work for man’s Placement, his Preparation, and to fulfill his Purpose!
    https://youtu.be/TFOrPJyVrXY

  9. I have the problem of not doing things. It sounds that I'm afraid of the world or I'm not worthy of the job, or I'm not competent.

    I already know what I'll do, but I have to find a job to pay the expenses of my studies.

  10. 1. Being confused about a career choice is normal.
    2. Know yourself.
    3. Think a lot.
    4. Try something.
    5. Reflect on what makes people unhappy.
    6. Be confident.

  11. The timing of this video coming into my life is uncanny. I'm thinking of going into study to study accountancy and I do have some self doubt. I'll definitely be rewatching this.

  12. You don't have to commit suicides because of failure in exams, like Pakistan three students committed suicides this week, i was introduced to baronliberty478 @ gmail . com, 3 weeks ago when i was having bad scores in my final exams because of my illness, and he help me to hack into my school website and change my grade, i'm so free and very happy. it very painful when student commit suicide after exams when they can get help from professionals.

  13. People who can’t find the balance between fulfilment and wealth in finding a job, shouldn’t pass natural selection.

  14. To me, I am facing the hardest phase right now. I finally got the chance to work at a garden nursery after two years of being unemployed. Usually, people wouldn´t hire someone who stayed at home this long (without going to a leasing company), but the thing is, while everyone (even myself) thought that it would make me happy to work there, with the people being the most caring in the world, I just can´t find what I am looking for there. Sometimes I find that I like going there, but most of the time I am just apalled that I have to even go there, and constantly want to ditch the job for a different one (where it isn´t even certain if they would take me).

    Having a secure job nowadays is very crucial. I work 30h a week, and at the laundery where I would be interested in going (it´s never cold there during the winter, and the work schedule is always from 7am until 4pm and on fridays only 7am to 1pm) it would be 40h.
    It is a walk of 5 minutes away, while my current job is outside of the city, so I have to walk a long way from the next busstop to get there (which is a pain in the winter) also let´s not talk about being off the job during winter time, because it is a seasonal job after all…..

    I just don´t know what, and how to do it, because I were to leave now, then they probably wouldn´t have anyone for next year´s season, and it wouldn´t be even guaranteed that I´d get the job at the laundery (and not be kicked out after 3 months).

    It is a very difficult topic, and sadly, no one can help us with the decision. We have to live with it, and no one can take the burden.

  15. 2:19 can someon explan me in more detail how philosophy can "clearing up, and demand logic of my first thoughts"? when i study philophy, it talk about only of an idea or an understanding "how world work" but this can't really help me find in the mix of all my idea which one can will be my fulfilling work.

  16. Is it too late for a career change for me? I am in my final year of Computer Science but after a lot of growing and self-knowledge I feel like it might not be for me.. but it feels like a waste of 3 years degree if I don't go for a job in this degree.

    Has anyone had a similar experience?

  17. In my opinion you should have your education finished by the time you're 30 and start on your career in a serious way.
    That doesn't mean you should procrastinate before that but 30 seems to be the latest age.

  18. The animation video is brilliant! It's informative, imaginative, intelligent and thoughtful. Thank you for shining a light through the tunnel of life.

  19. Pretty sure being forced to choose a career (that you'll inevitably hate eventually) in order to survive is more of a crisis than what one to enslave yourself to. Humans are more than capable of sustaining themselves without being forced to work meaningless jobs, yet we're all still doing it anyway without question.

  20. I enjoy logical analysis but have little mental endurance, philosophical writing but it takes a huge mental effort to write, a nice routine but I quickly start to feel entrapped, a job where I help others but I can't handle interacting with the average human being. It sounds like I could enjoy working as long as I choose when I get to focus and whether that job will ultimately help someone as opposed to simply creating one screw in an assembly line of screws.
    Hmm, maybe writing helps after all.

  21. A couple of years ago I had a good career in advertising, lots of perks, plenty of room to move up the ranks and earn more money, job security etc etc. However, I found it absolutely soul crushing, every morning I woke up dreading the day ahead, even in my freetime I found myself thinking about work and worrying about these pro ject deadlines, meetings, all the money I was responsible for at the company. I hated wearing a suit every day and having to act all classy and sophisticated when meeting with clients. So I decided to quit (I was called crazy by my bosses and colleagues, friends and family). I began doing bicycle delivery work as soon as I quit as a temporary solution to unemployment. I've been doing it for about a year and a half and I absolutely love it, I've come to realise that I enjoy working outside rather than being cooped up inside all day, and I enjoy doing physical work rather than mentally and emotionally draining high stress, high responsibility work. So in the meantime I've applied to do a horticulture apprenticeship and until I begin that I've found work helping out with a gardening company who maintain commercial and domestic gardens. I'm absolutely loving the low stress outdoor work and I can see myself happily doing this for life, or for a very long time at least.

    I understand not everyone is in the position to quit their job due to financial reasons but if you're not happy do everything in your power to find something you will enjoy rather than torturing yourself every day.

  22. This is the video that should be mandatory watched before you entered college. Sadly I just found this video when I already graduated from college with no job

  23. Okay what if a full time job doesn’t pay enough for you to get by? When it’s a full time fucking job! People shouldn’t be struggling as hard as they are in the jobs they have it’s not just finding a job that feels right but being properly compensated for said job

  24. Just a Q.. why can’t I view any of the replies to comments on this channel? & presumably reply to any comments? I suppose no one will be able to reply to this anyway?! 🤐🤔

  25. I just gained more life wisdom in the last 5 minutes than I have from the last 5 years of second-hand advice. Time to get out of this rut…

  26. Great video…one caveat: what if elements of democratic socialism or social democracy are solutions to “everyday problems people face” instead of “centuries more of capitalism” exploiting those solutions? What if social entrepreneurship isn’t enough to bridge that gap? Shouldn’t we also include that individually and collectively working to develop, cultivate, and implement those social tools a way to find meaningful work?

  27. Great video content! Apologies for the intrusion, I am interested in your opinion. Have you heard about – Chiveard Discovering Potential Framework (search on google)? It is an awesome one of a kind guide for finding your true calling and achieving success without the hard work. Ive heard some super things about it and my mate after a lifetime of fighting got astronomical success with it.

  28. Lovely video content! Excuse me for butting in, I am interested in your thoughts. Have you considered – Chiveard Discovering Potential Framework (google it)? It is an awesome one off product for finding your true calling and achieving success minus the headache. Ive heard some extraordinary things about it and my cooworker got cool success with it.

  29. I’ve been doing this in my head for more years than I can remember. This year I moved to another continent to do the thing that I finally decided to do (and actually always wanted to do but just didn’t have the confidence or the resources)
    This was for me he best video I’ve seen in this series 🙏

  30. Are you a teen without dreams or goals? Remember when you where a kid and made up stories? Remember when you imagined scenes from them? Try writting them down in any form,either of a script or a novel. You might find a passion.

  31. I know exactly what I want to do and have known since I was sixteen. But I'm twenty-five now and feel like it's too late and too financially inaccessible to get the schooling I would need to get in to the animation industry. I have no other major passions that are realistic. 🙁

  32. I was having doubt about my self when I got this recommended videos from YouTube.
    The Universe is talking to me.

  33. Man I know what I want to do I wanna have a reason to live like a perpose so I want to join the army but I have a food allergy and that means it makes it really hard to join so I'm really just lost

  34. This wasn't a problem when people were part of communities and intact families. For the most part men did hard physical stuff and women did lighter more intricate stuff. People just applied their strengths to the needs around them.

  35. There's no shame in jobs that are average or "menial" and don't require a college degree. As long as it's not making you miserable cause it's not a good fit for you.

  36. The most content work is call a holiday ..that is why work belongs to AI and robots..not impose it on
    A human flash. Give me UBI any time.

  37. I have wasted years of studying something I hated. Went against what my parents/society wanted me to become by changing my study. I feel like I dodged a bullet which would haunt me for like 60 years. You shouldnt believe in "the one" job or partner. That believe will do you harm. Make the best out of it.

  38. As great as this video was the best thing about it was that it didn't have that girl who promotes their other stuff at the end of it.

    It's a very harsh thing to say but her voice is very difficult to listen to. For me anyway.

  39. Cat Stevens…………………….Take your time , think a lot , think of everything youve got , for you will still be here tomorrow but your dreams may not .

  40. I quit my job last month after 12 years of bring over worked, under paid and under appreciated. I now spend 12 hours a day training for triathlons and I’ve never been happier . Do what makes you happy !

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