Are you "making a living?"

"Everyone needs to make a living."

You've heard that before. I heard it a lot when I was younger. By the time I was in my twenties, I was pretty sure that "making a living" meant doing something you hated for a paycheck that wasn't enough. How depressing. If people were "making a living," they sure looked terrible at the end of the day.

The funny thing about life is the fact that your world can become very small if you associate with similar people who do similar things and have similar interests. When I was young I worked with people who didn't really like what they were doing, who complained a lot, and who weren't good with money. So I thought the world was full of people who hated their jobs and were broke.

Turns out that there are also a lot of people who love doing what they do and are happy. Some are making more than enough money, and still have leisure time to enjoy everything they have.

As a designer I spent years applying design thinking to my projects. Asking myself how I could improve the work, how I could make things better. I never applied that type of thinking to my life until a few years ago. Now everything is different for me and I've eliminated a lot of hurdles and have deleted a number of problems from my life. I've streamlined my life and am now organizing my time to make the best use of it, and have built a blueprint for the future.

I would argue that it seems that most people are "making a dying." I strongly encourage people to spend a full day contemplating where they have been for the past 5 years and map out a new course for the next 5. See what sort of magic you can work with just a few hours of alone time. Remember, you don't have to be the same person you were in the past. The goal is to become better.

Jeff Ganger