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How not to hate your day job

Updated: Apr 26, 2023

Art Letter #9

Hey Friend!

I took a little break from Art Letters last week, but here I am again! And will try to be in your inbox every Sunday as promised :)

As creatives, by default we are somehow wired to dislike our day jobs, aren’t we? It’s something that we do for the time being. Till we figure out how to make a full living with our passion. It’s not the thing we see ourselves doing 10 years down the line. We eagerly look forward to the day when we do what we love for a living so that we don’t feel like we’re working at all. Right?

Our job is just something we do to pay the bills. For now. Just that. Just.

But I do feel that we trivialise how great it feels to be financially secure. We trivialise the peace of mind of knowing that you don’t have to think twice before buying that large tube of paint. We also trivialise how great it is to have a job that’s just a job, and not something that you’re emotionally invested in, whose sustenance depends on your personal luck, talent, connections, skills, and entrepreneurship acumen.

I know that not all jobs are the same, but here’s how I stopped hating my day job a few years ago:

  1. I see my day job as an enabler to my creative pursuit. It is the one that funds my art, and prevents me from being the “starving artist”.

  2. My day job gets me out and about and active even when I’m feeling creatively drained. Half the battle is won by just showing up.

  3. My day job makes me like art. It keeps me excited about coming back to art in the evenings and on weekends, and makes me love it even more! It gives me something to look forward to.

  4. It lets me say no to commissions I don’t feel like doing, and classes that I don’t feel like teaching. It keeps me exploring and experimenting by taking the pressure off.

  5. It gives me purpose, and keeps me on my toes, and brings structure to my life.

The best kind of art is the one that you don’t feel pressured to create. And even better is the art that you don’t feel pressured to sell. That’s when the real magic happens and you create without limitations.

If there’s something else that lets you create unabashedly, that’s great! For me, it’s my day job, and I’m grateful to have it :)

Let me know what you think about this in the comments or by hitting reply.



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