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I first met James Law in May of 2010 at the top of a mountain. No, seriously.
I was back in San Diego, visiting my old friends and college town.
At the time I was working for 3M and had a great job coming out of school. I was living in Manhattan, had a company car, expense account — the works.
That weekend we went out drinking on a Saturday night, SDSU style. A friend decided to wake everyone up at 9 AM on Sunday morning and told us we we should go for a run. We were going to run up Cowles mountain and sweat out the hangover.
James was also there for the run, and even brought along his camera. He casually took some photos of our “victory” at the top of the mountain. Then we got to talking.
He was at a crossroads in his career. I’m sure you’ve been there too. Remember the feeling?
A lot of us think we’re pursuing a noble career that’s meant for us (like my jobs at 3M and Google) and that we should be thankful for. We’re trying to do something that makes us happy, keeps us motivated, and helps us live the lifestyle we want.
Unfortunately, all too often we’re compartmentalized and boxed into a certain job, with specific things we can and can’t do. A lot of times, even these jobs that provide lots of “freedom” are really just shadow careers — a parallel of what we really should be doing. The problem is many of us haven’t quite seen or realized this yet.
Later on James followed up with me through email to do a little networking and…
“…get some advice on breaking into the next step in my sales and marketing career and am ready to grow”.
Clearly, he was simply looking to do anything else. So I gave him the standard reply. Told him about 3M. Described the job opportunities.
But then I asked him — “what actually interests you most?”
So James decided to open up and explain his situation.
“I’m really having a hard time with my job and I know that I’m not growing or learning anymore and its taking a toll on my psyche.”
How many times have you heard someone say that, or even felt it yourself? How unfortunate is it that this is happening to bright, talented, motivated men and women all around the world? Fortunately, there’s a revolution coming.
James also followed up with… Continue reading