If you’re a late twenty-something like Elijah and I, then chances are you remember a movie from the early 90’s called Groundhog Day, starring Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell, in which Bill Murray’s character relives February 2nd day after day. It’s a hysterical movie, until you start living it.
I have always dreaded working full time. Ever since my very first job at a movie theater when I was fifteen, I remember working the entire march break and looking forward to going back to classes – pretty twisted huh? It’s been like that with every job I’ve had since. My theory is that with most full time work, everyday begins repeating itself at some point and in my day to day, it’s unbearable and sometimes uncanny how repetitive my work is – this was the primary reason I went back to school in the first place.
I took a year off after high school to “find” myself, and what I found was the wonderful world of low end retail and realized I had to get myself an education – so that’s what I did. To the chagrin of my parents, who wanted me to do something more practical, I chose to pursue a degree in Interior Design. The decision was easy because it’s something I’m passionate about, good at and I thought it would prevent employment monotony to be doing something I love. This unfortunately is not the case. I am working now for a reputable, Swedish home furnishings giant, and although I love the people I work with, I cannot shake that ugly Groundhog hovering over my shoulder. It’s even gotten to the point where I’m seeing the same people in the morning on my walk to the subway. There’s shuffle man, who shuffles his way to the park along with his golden retriever. The skinny jogger, who is doing the same stretches before his morning jog, and the little man on the train who wears shoes that are too big for him and eats his breakfast of fruits out of a Tupperware container with a toothpick. Either I have a problem or there’s a pattern here, or maybe both. This isn’t even touching on my day to day responsibilities at work. If there’s one very important thing I’ve learned from my job, it’s that human nature is unbelievably predictable. Although change and renewal are boasted, there’s not much diversity in my position. Everyday just repeats itself.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not to say that working full time is bad, it’s just not my thing and I think a lot of people feel the same way I do. I went into the design field because I wanted variety and creativity and I’m starting to discover that I won’t get that unless I do it on my own. The most obvious con being the lack of health care coverage as an entrepreneur, but I’m willing to take that risk in return for mental sanity. If I were to work for myself as hard as I do for someone else, I could accomplish so much more and reap the benefits directly. The main objective of course being to keep myself fresh and wanting to do my work. Picking when and where I work (coffee shop, the park or in the car before you get to the cottage), what my work consists of and what my next project will be.
The movie itself is great, but the messages that can be found are even better:
- Educate yourself on a daily basis
- Discover what excites you and embrace it
- Don’t wait until you tire and eventually dread your existence – do something about it now
- Don’t eat Groundhogs 🙂
- Just because no one else is aware of the repetition it doesn’t mean it isn’t happening
- Tomorrow is another day, try something different
This is my theory and I’m sticking to it. My days of waking up to the alarm clock playing “I got you babe” are soon to be over.
4 thoughts on “The Groundhog Day Theory”
I admire your spirit. Your exuberance. Your fire. Your dream. And I know you share that with your beloved. How fortunate your are, not only to be living in a time when technology can be fused with desire to make your dreams a reality, but to have a partner to share a future with, which you can create together.
Hold onto what you now possess, no matter what bends appear in the road, keeping in mind that you have the power to control your destiny, not the other way around.
Thank you for your kind words. I am reminded everyday how lucky I am to have Elijah. Our passion and dedication not only to each other, but to what we’re trying to do is what gets me through my day. I look forward to all the bends in the road because it means we’re navigating it together.
Fantastic read! I think we all have felt like Bill Murray at one point or another! It’s crazy how quick and easy it is to fall into that groundhog syndrome. To me it just seems that it happens so easily now that we’re all alittle older. My biggest fear in life has always been to wake up one day and realize “Where the hell did the last 10 years go?” The whole get up, go to work, have a coffee, go home, fall asleep, get up go to work again….it’s balls…that’s why whenever I get the opportunity to go somewhere, doing something, disappear for a night or two I jump on it.
As I told Eli love the site and keep up the great work!
From the guy they use to call “Bustonator”
Your right Busto, and just like we were talking about in your car over the long weekend – follow your passion and destroy that fu**ing groundhog.
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