Letting motivators lead the way

When I was a kid, like all kids, I grew up with a sense of wonder thinking about what I wanted to do when I grew up. As I discovered the web, I immediately started making my own websites for fun. Because of this, when I began working, I essentially fell into a profession as a web designer. It made perfect sense, but throughout the years I started to feel like there were other things I could be doing.

At first, I thought it was freelancing on my own. But after doing that for a while, I would find myself going to networking events asking people what they did for a living. Not because it was the standard thing to start a conversation with, but because I was interested in what else was out there. As if maybe what I was doing was the wrong thing. Even when I would interact with someone at a coffee place or a restaurant, I would think about what it might be like to have a job like that. Look at the girl at the coffee shop, it must be so nice to work in a coffee shop. Look at that DJ, he seems so into what he’s doing. Look at that nurse, it must be so rewarding being a nurse. I would eventually stop thinking about a particular job when I would picture myself doing it and realize how incompetent I would be at it!

I then turned to reading about other people’s line of work and the reasons they did what they did and began understanding the importance of motivators. For example, when I started building websites, I would do both the interface design and programming. There was a point where I had to decide between a path of primarily design and a path of primarily programming. In order to decide, I found that I needed to figure out what my own motivators for my work were. Besides the fact that it’s very difficult to do both design and programming well, I never really had the patience to be a real programmer. Even though I understood programming logic from learning it in school and had an interest in it conceptually, I never seemed to be able to get into the deeper aspects of it. It was always a means to get a design I had made working.

Practicing the process of understanding my motivators has helped me figure out the things I should focus my attention on. The things that strike a chord with me. The things I feel the need to study and analyze. The things that are worth trying out and seeing where they take me.