I’ve heard comedians say it. I’ve noticed it myself. When I get together with other men, it’s not very likely that we’ll talk about ourselves, i.e., our emotions and feelings. I mean, we will talk our jobs, our goals. The closest we will come to opening up is when we discuss a hobby/pass-time, since that can be more personal. But that’s if we go out and meet for a beer/coffee. We often don’t. Better to meet and play a sport or a game. That makes the time go by, and the chat-time to a minimum.
Some might say that men do this to avoid intimacy. Maybe. But for me, for better or for worse, I think about my professional life more than almost anything else. Only my family gets more attention. I am a father of one–another little on the way–so this makes sense, right? I need to think about how much money I’m bringing in, so that along with my wife, we are able to do right by our kids.
But here’s the thing, and it’s quite embarrassing to admit: though I have obsessed about work for years, somehow, the money part of the discussion wasn’t really part of my thinking–not until recently. This comes out of laziness, in part it does. I have a pretty high tolerance for just hanging out at home if left to my own devices. I am a lazy-ass boulder not wanting to move unless moved by something powerful: like the need to eat. So, I really want to find something I enjoy. It just helps me roll out of bed–pun intended.
But there’s something else at play, something deeper down and not something I was totally aware of until now. All this time, I have been seeking out something I could do well and get paid for it. I am a good teacher; I think I can say that without being too arrogan about it. But teaching, like writing, needs life experiences to fuel it. I think that, at least. It’s like an incomplete protein; it needs to be coupled with something else. At least for me it does. I can see myself teaching; I’d like to keep a foot in education. But I want something else, and it’s time to go for that.
This week, I’ll be talking about how I found something I want to go for, and over the next year, I’ll share with you the steps I’m taking to get there. (That will, of course, include many neurotic moments of self-doubt.) But hey, the way I figure it if my readers are at least half women, at least someone will listen to me about me.