Job vs Career

I came to the realisation fairly late in life that your job is not your career. One can help support the other, but they are never one and the same.

I started 2024 with a bit of time off to spend contemplating my current state, assessing it and starting to plan out the future. One of the big issues and points of conflict and dissatisfaction during 2023 was my job. I had to really dig into this idea and came to the realisation that it was my job that was making me unhappy — not my career.

That distinction — Job vs Career — wasn’t apparent before.

The Job had become all-consuming and demanding. Having some space and time away from it gave me a better perspective, especially since the two aren’t the same. They’re not even interchangeable.

A career contains a multitude of jobs. Some of them are the ones you get paid for, but many of them aren’t. And that’s often where the confusion comes into play. The paid job begins to bleed into other areas, and you associate the paid job with all the other jobs. They get lumped together as a career, but they are distinct and need to be kept separate. It’s our mind that blends them together, so every so often, we need to pull focus, reevaluate and paint in the edges to make it clear what our jobs really are.

One of the selling points of the Focus Course is focus, both to see things more closely and direct our attention.

In reflection, I can say that for the last few years, I’ve paid too much attention to my paid job and not my career. I’ve allowed the job to expand beyond its parameters and edges to consume everything around it—my time, attention, and priorities. What I need to do, and what I plan to do in 2024, is to switch that.

I want to focus on my career, not my job.

That’s not to say I won’t be working or pulling my weight; what I’m saying is that my focus will be my career and the multiple other jobs that make that up. The other jobs to be done are learning, writing, sharing, connecting, communicating, and organising - all the things that I need and want in my career that my job can’t provide.