The Reunion

Okay, I bet you have been just eagerly waiting since yesterday to find out what grabbed me in this new book I’m reading called Quitter: Closing the Gap Between Your Day Job & Your Dream Job [affiliate link]

Author and Speaker, Jon Acuff

Here it is: People tend to assume that finding their dream job is an act of discovery. A wild revelation they happen upon some day that feels a bit like an orgasm. Sorry for the crude language, but it’s true! We believe that once we find that ONE THING it is going to be absolutely amazing – something like we have never experienced in our lives before.

Jon actually describes coming in touch with our dreams as an act of recovery. We are reunited with something that we have experienced in our past and it finally clicks, and we know, we know this is one thing we are meant to do.

Below are a few excerpts from Ch. 2 in Quitter:

We think finding out what we want to do is going to be a revelation. In our twenties or thirties or forties, we will serendipitously stumble upon some activity we’ve never done and like a kid tasting ice cream for the first time, we’ll be hooked. Lightbulb! … that’s what we believe about our dreams. But dreams rarely work that way.

In his book Start with Why, author Simon Sinek discusses this reality. He calls our dreams, or calling, our “WHY.” He says, “The WHY for every individual or organization comes from the past. It is born out of the upbringing and life experience of an individual.” He further explains that finding WHY is not a process of “invention.”

I think finding your dream job or what Sinek calls your WHY is more than a revelation or an act of discovery. I believe it’s a process of recovery.

More often than not, finding out what you love doing most is about recovering an old love or an inescapable truth that has been silenced for years, even decades. When you come to your dream job, your thing, it is rarely a first encounter. It’s usually a reunion. So instead of setting out to discover this thing you love doing, you’ve got to change your thinking and set out to recover it, maybe even rescue it.


Because somehow you lost it along the way.

But if finding your dream is an act of recovery, that changes everything.

You don’t ask the bottomless, “What do I want to do with my life?” but instead, “What have I done in my life that I loved doing?” Instead of a million different options from out there, you’re suddenly left with a manageable handful of options from within your own experience.

Once you make this mental switch, you can immediately start combing through your history for hints that will reveal your “something.”

Why not start now?
Grab a sheet of paper (or your idea journal if you keep one) and write this question:

What have I done in my life that I loved doing?

Jot down everything that comes to mind – regardless of how ridiculous it sounds. One thing that I’m still slightly embarrassed of, but am beginning to embrace, is that I love to make ridiculous videos and post them to YouTube for my friends and family to enjoy. Honestly, I’m still not sure how this will play into my “dream job” but I really enjoy doing it, so I’m finally acknowledging it.

Question: What is one thing from your past that you loved to do? I’d love to hear it! Share your ONE THING in the comment section.


7 thoughts on “The Reunion

  1. I loved participating in community theatre. I’ve performed a bit and worked back stage even more. As time has marched I’ve come to a place where carving out the time to participate hasn’t been a priority. I still love it and support by attending performances but right now my path doesn’t have participation in the cards. Thanks.

    • Nicholas, it’s great that you found something that you really enjoyed doing. Have you found that since you no longer carve out time for community theatre involvement, that you have come across a new, less time consuming interest? I believe you mentioned that you enjoy Anusara Yoga. Would you consider this to be an element of a bigger idea you are passionate about?

      • Certainly. The theme is service and it’s manifested in many forms. Construction(cement), graphic design, community theatre, virtually every imaginable restaurant industry role, financial development, international logistics, etc. so this theme, often to create connection, runs throughout.

  2. I loved reading that part about “recovery” because it made me think of The Artist’s Way! šŸ™‚
    One thing from my past that I LOVED to do was write songs and poetry. I’m finally getting back into poetry after abandoning it for 4 years after studying it in college.

    • Yes! As I continue to read books, I am amazed at how they seem to share common threads – I’m also finding that the The Artist’s Way
      book is referenced often in other books!

      Something I also continue to read about is this: One way to get back in touch with your “passions” is to investigate what it is you used to love to do as a kid or earlier on in your life. I can imagine how 4 years of focusing on writing in school could burn you out. I felt that way about Interior Design once I graduated college. Perhaps sometimes in our lives we need a break from things, only to return to them with a fresh perspective. šŸ™‚

    • Rena! You’re timing with this comment is perfect. šŸ™‚ I decided last night I will be switching gears a little with the blog and will be sharing a lot more about my personal journey of learning to love and embrace myself exactly as I am – crazy dancing woman and all. šŸ™‚ Please definitely continue to visit the site. Based on your comment here, I think you may be able to relate to some of the stories I’ll be sharing.

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