When was the last time you were presented with a new opportunity?
The last time you looked for a new job?
The last time a friend asked for a favor?
The last time you went on a date?
On any of these occasions didn’t you really ask yourself what’s in it for me? Of course you did. We all do. Other than a paycheck when you’re looking at a new job what you really want to know is what exactly is in it for you. Benefits, bonus, commute, hours. These are all well and good but do you also wanna know what you can learn from this job?
The last time a friend asked you a for a favor did you also expect a favor back at some point?
The last time you went on a date didn’t you really expect to get laid? Or maybe fall in love? Or at least find a new friend?
I was going through the job boards recently and I found a job that I was drawn to. Among other things in the job posting was their need for someone to create amazing teams and be a mentor for their staff. I knew right away I could do that job because not only do I have those skills but I can really contribute to somebody’s professional development - that’s one thing I have that I can share with the world.
The first time I fell in love, really in love, I loved with all I had to give. I gave freely, and completely. The depth of this love changed me and gave me new perspective on my capacity to love another human being.
But the thing is....for all that I gave I got in return. Every ounce of love that poured out of my heart was filled right back up.
It’s not always that way with love. We have to go into our relationships giving fully of ourselves. Putting all of our heart and soul into it. We have to continue to give and not take for granted those to whom we are loving, and who are loving us.
With love though, this is one of those grey areas. One of those 50 Shades of Masculinity that colors the line where just giving of yourself doesn’t always make you happy. Nor does it ensure success in your relationship. With love you both have to give. If you continue to give your love and yourself to someone with no love coming back the hurt is going to be there repeatedly. An emptiness. That part of your heart and soul is draining and not being refilled.
Your capacity to love doesn’t depend on a return investment but your relationship does.
So does that new job. A great opportunity and a great means to show your skill and put it to use. But you aren’t going to work for free are you? Are you going to take a pay cut just to provide a service you know can help people when it won’t cover your living expenses? Not likely.
God bless those that can do that.
Do you continue to do favors for your friends and not expect anything in return?
It’s ok to go one-for-one with friends and favors. It’s also ok to just do for others from the goodness of your heart.
My dad taught me ‘In order to have a friend you had to be a friend' and to do for others without expecting anything back.
He also taught me not to be a doormat.
That’s another shade altogether. You can give of yourself freely without being taken advantage of by others.
The message here is take care of yourself. That doesn’t mean take care of yourself first and fuck everyone else. That means when you’re dealing with love, friends, a new opportunity, a new job, or just an opportunity to challenge yourself or do good for others, it’s OK to ask what’s in it for me but just make sure when you find out just what that is and you do it anyway, that you do it well.
If you are going to be a friend, be a good friend to a few people, rather than just average to dozens of people you really barely know. Popularity is nice but it can also drain you of your energy and your time with your closer, inner-circle friends.
Take that job and put in all your effort, not just so you get a good review and hopefully a decent raise, but do it so at the end of a the day you can be satisfied with a job well done. Will you ever be fulfilled at any job, now matter how great, if you only give 50%? what about 85%? That 15% of 'ehh whatever' is going to be what gets noticed by your boss and likely to show up at review time and most importantly, it will likely be reflected in your salary adjustment. Ok, realistically now... I mean we all have off days, but don't let that be the norm. When that starts happening you know something is up with you, or with the job. Maybe you are realizing you just haven't been getting what you expected from your work. Maybe no matter how close to that 100% you give that it just hasn't been noticed or mattered. What now?
Guys seriously, hit the gym, get your stress out. Or get outside, go to the beach, the park, a walk in the woods, wherever. But get out into nature and reflect on all that bullshit. Get some perspective. No one gives better perspective than Mother Nature. If you're the mani-pedi kind of guy hit the salon. If you are the spiritual kind of guy, go to your place of worship and pray to your higher source. If you are the meditation kind of guy get down with that. I can recommend some great guided meditations on YouTube if you are interested.
You might just find that the 15% of 'ehh whatever' really means you need to move on.
That goes for your job. That goes for your friendships. Toughest of all, that goes for your relationship as well.
Look, new opportunities don’t come around all that often. Don’t shy away because even though there might be great personal reward it sounds like a lot of work.
Take that new class and throw yourself into learning. Do it to broaden your knowledge-base or skill set, and not to just ‘pass’ so I can fulfill my work requirement.
Love fully, wholly, completely and with all of your soul.
Or on the other hand…
You can pass that opportunity by and stay where you are.
You can keep your current job and not risk anything but the end of a monotonous career.
You can say no to that friend who needs the favor, and pretty soon they’ll stop asking.
You can choose not to risk your heart and be alone.
The same question I asked before applies here:
Are You Man Enough?
To risk your daily routine by grabbing a new opportunity
To risk stepping out of your comfort zone by looking for a new job, one that challenges you?
To risk your time extending your help to those that need you?
To risk experiencing the pure joy of love with another?
Be a man!
Grab the rope and swing to the other side!
Some say life is short. Life is literally the longest thing we ever do. Time is relative to what we make of it and when we let it pass without making the most of it...it seems to fly by unnoticed. Take a chance, if it doesn’t work out there’s always plan B, and if that doesn’t work there are 24 more letters in the alphabet.
Keep risking, you’ll never find our what’s in it for you until you do.