Conference Room Epiphany.
Sitting in a conference room for one of my “exciting” sales meetings, a question arose so clearly in my mind I thought I was being talked to by someone else. I think my subconscious just had enough and needed to confront me about something that’s been boiling under the surface for quite some time now. As clear as day I heard the following:
WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING HERE?
Glancing through the familiar faces in the room over and over again I wondered to myself is there anyone else in here that thinks that all of this is just absolute bullshit? Are there people in here that put on the same charade I put on day after day? I can’t quite speak for them because I don’t know what’s going on in their heads.
It’s hard to believe though that these young talented full of life individuals truly like listening to the constant excel sheet banter that goes on day in and day out in almost every corporate office around the country. It’s hard to grasp that some of these individuals have been doing this for 20 fucking years! At what point in time did they say fuck it this is who I am? Every single day they put on the same bullshit trot to their cubicles plop in there chair until five and trot back home to do it all over again tomorrow. How did they do it for so long?
My friends, it’s absolutely safe to say that I can not; scratch that I WILL NOT conform to this. Don’t get me wrong, I myself am guilty of humming to the same tune day in and day out. I think I fell into this because as a young adult growing up this is all I was taught! No one laid out an alternative option for me. No one taught me about amazing writers and entrepreneurs that said no to this and paved their own path through life. It wasn’t until I witnessed what this corporate life was like that I started researching different ways of living and how other people were able to avoid the corporate path.
Growing up while I was in high school, I was always told by my parents and school advisers to pick a career I wanted to go into and study that in college. I was told that once I graduated college that I would go into the field I studied and start a career. What they didn’t tell me was that after all the days of studying and worrying about my career I would be sitting in a cubicle day in and day out doing the same thing over and over again in hopes that I could climb the corporate latter until the years of my retirement.
I sound bitter I know! It’s just when I am looking around the office all I see is hamsters on hamster wheels. Some are younger than others running faster than the older ones. When the hamsters get too old they walk off the hamster wheel and get to finish off their lives in Florida somewhere. A lot of these people don’t do this for themselves anymore. During the years of being a hamster on the wheel, they have got married and started families. They made a selfless decision to continue on the hamster wheel regardless of what their aspirations actually are. I want to stress that those career people are one of the most loyal people I know! Think about what they have done.
They at one point, set their own feelings, dreams, and ambitions aside to make sure they could provide for their loved ones. That’s the corporate trap! While you are running along on this wheel your life alters. Your responsibility multiplies exponentially and the idea of taking a risk just isn’t acceptable for you anymore. Starting a business or pursuing an art are in the rear view at this point. Yes, some people are able to break the cycle later on but they are few and far between.
I think I hit the crossroads where you choose to go left or right? One road leads me to 30 more years of the same mountainous existence I have been living for the last 5 years. The other leads me to a winding road with risks and ups and downs but a life of pursuing what it is I really want to do.
I either make my choice and take that road or I shut my mouth and put my head down and get ready to become one of the selfless robots that no longer pursue their dreams but facilitates the lives of the people they love.