Your Life as Your Calling

I probably don't have to tell you the wonders that books have to offer, but sometimes you're lucky enough to pick up just the right book at the right time. The last time this happened to me, I had picked-up Body of Work by Pamela Slim. 

This time it's The Art of Work by Jeff Goins (and yes, I've noticed the similarity in titles and theme).

Jeff's book is basically about finding your calling and the stages you have to go through to get there, along with inspiring examples from his life and others. His subtitle says it all: a proven path to discovering what you were meant to do.

Since I've been at a crossroads for a while—transitioning from corporate career climber to side hustler/entrepreneur—I have been reading a lot about how to make a living doing what you enjoy and/or are good at. 

Jeff reframed things in a way that made an impact. Below are some highlights.

  1. A calling is not something you necessarily know from birth nor is it defined. It may start quietly and will probably evolve as you do.
  2. A calling requires work, help from others, and commitment. It is not meant to be easy but something you challenge yourself to accomplish.
  3. What you do affects who you become, so spending time at a job you hate means you are not the person you can—or were meant—to be.
  4. Failure and hardship teach you to pivot to the path that will lead to your calling. There is often a season of hardship preceding finding your calling.
  5. Not only is work and a calling meant to improve the world and ideally leave it better off, but it is meant to do the same for you and leave you better off.
  6. Your calling is a journey and if you live your life well, all of your life becomes your calling.

He also discusses how living a life with a calling requires a "portfolio life," where you have different roles and types of work that combined make up your calling. Given my day job, two side hustles, various book clubs and nonprofit work, I've been living a portfolio life for a while...I just now have a label for it.

So do I know what my calling is? I'm not certain but it definitely involves both teaching/mentoring and books, probably business ones, which is why YourMBR will be given a full chance and several pivots if need be. It also plays into my role at 24/7 Teach, my other side hustle.

My calling probably won't end there and I'm fine that it's a journey. I now see how all my experiences led me to this place—to both thinking of YourMBR and to being able to launch it and to being a part of 24/7 Teach. And I am curious and excited to see how both I and my calling with further evolve.

Are you ready to find your calling?


Karina is VP of Operations and HR at 24/7 Teach.

A version of this was originally posted on Business Common Sense blog.

Disclosure: IndieBound affiliate link included.