I have been talking to a lot of people. I feel as though COVID has prompted a lot more conversations that I have ever had before. Because people keep calling me… to talk. It used to be people called me to make plans, or ask my a quick question, but these are some deep diving soul searching conversations.
Or me and my friends would hang out and take a gaggle of kids to go do something, but never actually talked to each other because we spent our whole time in the same physical space wrangeling kids. Now, people come over after the kids go to bed to sit around a fire and talk from a distance.
I graduated from college with a degree in sociology. What this means in real life application is that when people talk I am listening, and not just listening correlating the data and finding patterns. Then I sit with these hypothesis and as I sit and listen to more people I am fact checking my presumptions and adding additional info to my pre made supposition.
So as people are talking to me I am a buzz with interest as it is all new data for me to take in and process. I have to say I have come up with a new understanding of what it means to be in ones 30’s.
Anyone following my blog or any other social media knows that my life has been in a state of flux as of late. Yet the more I talk to people that are a similar age to myself it seems that my experience is not singular. This is true for people that are single, or don’t have kids, or own a home or rent. Is seems to transcend many dividing features such as income, gender or race.
What I am experiencing is that some individuals in the early to mid 30’s are not satisfied or nurtured by their work life. And this has nothing to do with any baby boomer judgements about millenials being lazy or what have you. It is a direct experience of having played the game, worked their asses off, and for what? Here they are with nothing to show for it.
Let me rephrase that. There is something to show for it. There is a distinct awareness of what each individual has mastered in their work life up to this point. They are aware of what role they play on a team, aware of their strengths, aware of what work they are not willing to do anymore, aware of their worth, convictions, and passions. Skills essential to being a great employee when finding the right profession.
So we the 30 somethings begin to ask ourselves “What is it we are supposed to do?” And we sit and we think, and it seems to be at some point we start to think the problem is us. But I am here to tell you it is not us. It is a flawed economic system that dictates our worth in dollars rather than meaningful work that nurtures the soul and pushes an individual to strive harder and learn more.
It is our distinct opportunity at this juncture in life to find our calling and passion. Perhaps to go back to school, start a new career path, found something, build something, or just to get off our asses and do something.
Because what we have to offer in this stage in life is valuable. Because it comes from self knowledge and self worth, and I am inclined to believe that is worth more than minimum wage.