It’s day number two, and fear shadows the pursuit of my dream. I knew I had this nervousness before entering the 100-day stretch of chosen joblessness, but I really felt it strongly today while walking the sidewalks of Santa Monica with a thin carrycase in hand like a modern-day helpless door-to-door salesman. I tried every attempt to contain the fear. Positive phrases whispered under my breath like “I’m selling high quality fine art photographs” or “I’ll be as successful as my friends and family have told me” only served as band-aids for my anxiety. The truth kept bleeding out: I have no clue how to survive on my own. I’m frequently reminded throughout the day why companies are created, and why people seek the safe and established route of working for someone else. I once did it. I know damn well why I did it. The job was available, the money was guaranteed, the benefits were a welcome bonus.
It goes without saying that employment of any kind is better than unemployment. A job pays the bills, creates a person’s identity, and adds to the general well-being of the worker and his family. Just look at how labor statistics make or break a President. If the data is positive and unemployment is low, the legacy of the leader in power will largely remain intact no matter what else gets stripped away by adverse parties. But if the data is negative and unemployment is through the ceiling…well, that President can take a seat next to James Buchanan and the other “not-so-stellar” leaders of the past.
So why do people leave their jobs? Why did I leave mine? Are we insane? Selfish? Unappreciative?
I shall delve more into this tomorrow. After redepositing my final paychecks from my former employer (the checks bounced on my first attempt), and picking up a 11×14″ art portfolio, and driving half the city for a Square credit card reader, and approaching two spas for my metal prints, I’m a bit beat.