I was shopping for cakes today and bought 2 cakes. There were 2 of us, and we wanted one each, and the guy says “You can get a third cake for the price of 2, which cake do you want?” and although that’s a good deal, it kind of bugged me, and (in my obsessive analytical way) I realised it bugged me because I had lost control of my decision making right then. I had strode into the cake shop, confident of my wants, my decisions, my choices and my needs, and suddenly my whole world view (I want 2 cakes) was reversed at someone else’s decision.I thought I knew what I wanted, and someone else had taken over and was making me operate on their terms (they want to sell more cakes).
I mention it because it reminded me of ‘the social network’ which I watched last night. The harvard guy talks about how harvard encourages students to create their own job, rather than just take a job. I thought this was an incredibly good attitude and should be drilled into ALL students, not just ones at elitist super-expensive universities.
You almost certainly don’t have the job you want. You might *like* your job, but that’s different. You didn’t *really* choose your job. Someone else had an idea, and wanted to make/do/build something. They then worked out they needed some people do do parts X and Y (probably the annoying, boring bits) and they posted a job ad, or asked a headhunter for someone to do it. They then wrote a contract, on their terms, and offered it to you. They will tell you what to do, and keep you doing it as long as it is useful to them.
Employment is a very one-sided situation for most people. Imagine showing up at a job interview with your own contract and asking the employer to sign it. Laughable isn’t it?
Working for yourself is not just different in minor job security and tax and quality-of-life ways. It is a fundamental re-arrangement of the terms upon which you carry out a good third of your existence. Even if you are 80% sure you prefer employment to self employment, I strongly recommend trying it before you hit 40ish, and you become too risk averse. I don’t know many people who tried it and went back to a regular job.
Here is another clue alluding to my next game. The last three were a bit hard. I would have thought trench art and stormtrooper helmets were pretty easy to spot, but I’m impressed how rapidly someone can spot a tiger tank gun barrel, especially when it’s a photo of one I took myself :D. Enjoy: