Your Calling

There’s a piece of scrap paper I’ve been carrying around with the following thoughts on it:Try many things. Find what you love and do that. Then figure out how to make a living doing it. Work is transformed when we change our attitudes towards work.

I didn’t write these words ( and my deepest apologies to the original author whom I would credit if I could remember who it was ) but I want to preserve these thoughts and the ideas because they are powerful ideas. As time goes by, this simple approach towards work has been changing my attitudes about success. Lately, I’ve been listening a lot to the music of JJ Cale, an OKC native who seems to embody this simple yet powerful idea in his life and work. One of his songs which was rerecorded on his recent collaboration with Eric Clapton consists of one chord. One chord! And to top it all, the guys were winners of the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Blues Album “The Road to Escondido”.

One chord. Simple is good. Do what you do. Be good at what you do.

The author Thomas Moore has written:

“Power that comes from unexpected places. It comes from living close to the heart, not at odds with it. The soul appears in the gaps and holes of experience. We have all experienced moments when we’ve lost a job or endured an illness only to find unexpected inner strength. Be good at what you’re good at. Many of us spend time and energy trying to be something we are not. In considering who we are not we may find the surprising revelation of who we are.”

Several years ago I began to recognize what seemed to be a growing imbalance between underwriting supply and demand. I decided then to refocus on my underwriting skill set. I figured there would always be work and so far, I’ve been right.

Michael Novak is an esteemed theologian, author and former US ambassador who has written over 25 books. In one of his books titled Business as a Calling. Novak writes about the four characteristics of a calling. First, each calling is unique to each individual. Second, a calling has certain preconditions that involve more than just desires. A calling requires that the individual have talent. For the calling to be right for a particular person it must match and use his abilities. Third, a true calling reveals itself through enjoyment and a sense of renewed energies that engaging in the calling brings. Fourth, callings are not easy to discover. Many false paths are taken before the truth path is recognized.

It has taken a long time to be me.

2 thoughts on “Your Calling

  1. Thank you for sharing your introductory quote and the points made by Michael Novak about one’s calling. Because you also quote contemporary writer Thomas Moore, you may be interested in his recently released book, A Life at Work: Discovering the Joy of What You were Born to Do, published by Random House’s Broadway Books. Moore is blogging about his U.S. book tour in the forum associated with Barque, a blog dedicated to his activities:
    http://barque.blogspot.com .
    Please feel welcomed to join the community and share your thoughts of the new book.

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