I often wonder how it is that so many people seem unhappy with their lot in life. It’s ok that they have problems like the rest of us, but for some reason they seem to walk around with a miserable look on their face that kind of says "Don’t even think about daring me to smile".
I wonder what happened to them to take away the smiling face that must exist somewhere in a photo from their childhood. Personally I think that somehow they ended up doing something they don’t really like to do. I think when we find something that we enjoy it brings a whole new perspective to life.
I was talking to a man last week who was a talented musician in his childhood. Unfortunately it interefered with his academic work at school and so his father took his instrument away from him. He has never played an instrument again, even though his face lit up when he talked about it. When I suggested he start again, he made all sorts of excuses for not doing it. I think he has missed the point – we’re only here once, so enjoy it. I hope that some time he will pick up an instrument again, as I know he could get so much food for his soul from it.
I don’t know about you, but I really want my children to grow up happy and to have the sense of being able to achieve something in life. If that something turns out to be playing a trumpet, or rock-climbing, or anything else, that’s fine with me. The important thing for me is that they are able to have passion and heart for whatever they do.
I found a great article by Steve Jobs, the founder and ceo of Apple, about having your heart in your work. A dropout from college himself, he gave a speech a few years ago to a graduation class. It is worth the read.