Unlike a lot of people I know, I love my job.  Actually, I don’t think of what I do as a job.  That word somehow conveys the image of toil; of doing something because you have no other choice.  If you think of what you do as a job, it’s probably understandable that you hate it.

When I was a teenager, and living in an area and an era when wages were low, work was hard, and something you did in order to survive.  I began working full time when I was 13, and while I had a few jobs that were pleasant enough, I can’t say that I liked any of them.  When I graduated from high school and went out into the world to make it on my own, one of the promises I made to myself was that I would never hold a ‘job’ again.  I would only take work that paid a living wage, but most importantly, that gave me personal pleasure and satisfaction.  I knew going in that with that attitude, I wasn’t going to get rich, but having tons of money was less important than having a life that was worth living.

Looking back, I can say with a degree of smug satisfaction that I succeeded in sticking to my plan.  I’ve never had a job, but I’ve had a number of positions doing things that I truly loved doing.  I haven’t become rich, though I’m comfortably well off, but I have the satisfaction of knowing that in some small way, I’ve often made my corner of the world a better place.  My efforts have contributed to the well-being of other people and, in the doing; I have been immensely happy and satisfied.  On more than one occasion I’ve turned down jobs that would have paid me a lot more than I was making at the time.  Instead, I’ve taken less lucrative, but emotionally rewarding positions.  I’ve never had cause to regret doing so.

In everything I’ve done, I’ve stayed true to the promise a 16-year old boy made to himself the day he left high school.  I’ve never had a ‘job,’ and I’ve never done anything that I didn’t enjoy doing.  I haven’t made lots of money, but I am rich in the experiences of a life traveling to every corner of the world, and meeting some of the most interesting people on the planet.  I’ve spoken to kings and cannibals, dealt with priests and pirates, and I can truly say that I love what I do.

Published by Charles Ray