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#1133755 - 12/16/17 05:16 PM Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER)  
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 18,314
Brian Austin Whitney Online content
Brian Austin Whitney  Online Content


Top 10 Poster

Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 18,314
Indianapolis, IN USA
Hi Folks,

I just found a 5 minute piece of advice that may be the best I have seen when it comes to "following your passion" and pursuing meaningful work. I can't wait to hear your thoughts!

Mike Rowe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVEuPmVAb8o

Brian


Brian Austin Whitney
Founder
Just Plain Folks
jpfolkspro@aol.com
Skype: Brian Austin Whitney

"Don't sit around and wait for success to come to you... it doesn't know the way." -Brian Austin Whitney


#1133762 - 12/17/17 03:49 AM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 4,662
Michael Zaneski Offline
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Michael Zaneski  Offline
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California
LOL..I love the sewer worker who realized one day he was "passionate about other people's crap.."

These are just random thoughts ..

There's a lot of truth in what Mike Rowe said, but just like he was a young adult who made mistakes and followed his passion down blind alleys, it seems like that's what being young and figuring out who we are is all about. I mean it's great if we know at the age of nine, fifteen or twenty what we want to do with our lives (and then have the talent and know-how to make it happen) but it does take several years to absolutely know for sure that one's passion and one's livelihood will under no circumstances ever dovetail.

I think there's quite a few more people that are stuck with jobs they are good at but don't enjoy than folks who love doing something they truly suck at. Sure, some people build a fortress around themselves and lack the Know Thyself gene. I DO think a high IQ in regards one's ability to be self-critical..though..this can actually work to amplify a modest amount of talent. You at least know when you are doing poorly and can then try to do something about it. And if you do enough 'things-about-it' --this can rival talent, Especially talent that could care less, lol. smile

And we all have different inner algorithms in regards how much value we place on 'what we're good at' vs. 'what we love.' Some folks could care less about money and just want to do what they love.

I think the best test for one's "passion" is to attempt to live without it and to actually try a bunch of other things. Like Rowe said, maybe we discover something we're both good at AND can be passionate about. But sometimes we end up back with what we love to do. It just outweighs eveything else.

MIke


Last edited by Michael Zaneski; 12/17/17 04:43 AM.

Fate doesn't hang on a wrong or right choice
Fortune depends on the tone of your voice

-The Divine Comedy (Neil Hannon)
from the song "Songs of Love"
from the album "Casanova" (1996)
#1133764 - 12/17/17 08:54 AM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 18,314
Brian Austin Whitney Online content
Brian Austin Whitney  Online Content


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Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 18,314
Indianapolis, IN USA
I think kids should have a reasonable plan for their college education. They should start by removing the arts (aside from perhaps technical training with career paths), social issues, pop culture, and the plethora of other obviously unemployable degrees where even if you were to get a job in that field it would never give you return on investment for your college costs and the time wasted there. I no longer recommend kids go to college unless they are confident in their path and likely return on investment which includes tuition, living expenses, books, other fees as well as likely interest to be paid on the loans versus pursuing the same or similar career paths using an alternative pathway to get started. 4 (or more for advanced degrees) years of potential work and income, hands on experiences, networking and mentors in the field of interest versus idiot college professors or worse grad assistants who have no actual experience and no knowledge beyond theory rather than practical hands on success to prove their curriculum, ideas and methods. Compare that to becoming an apprentice in the field or fields of your choice for 4 years where you may or may not make a living, but at worst the education is free. it's real world, hands on and you get to experience what the early stage of that career might entail as well as observe the operation and potential pathways for the future. You also gain confidence and savvy working around and with professionals, practicing your own skills, demeanor, communication abilities and likely also discover your weaknesses and opportunities to improve. With the right mentors, you can begin shoring those things up immediately, 4 or more years earlier than your peers, giving you a giant head start over them. Bottom line is after 4 years of your peers getting deeply in debt, meeting next to no one in your field, forming little hands on skills and work history, and failing to fail, which is the best teacher, because the university route doesn't give you a chance to do anything for real. Plus, if you find you dislike the work, you may discover other related options within that or similar industries, or you can simply shift gears to something else entirely. In fact, you can experiment virtually risk free in many different fields, take wild chances pushing yourself in new directions and frankly have a great time doing it. The only downside is missing the college social fun, but it is highly overrated most of the time.

After 4 years, you'll either have a lot of practical experience, contacts in that industry, a positive reputation if you have worked hard, you'll be polished because you will have gotten past most rookie mistakes with little negative impact because you won't be in peril financially should you mess up so badly you lose a job like you would if you graduated and had loans to repay. And, most importantly, you won't be stuck in a job you hate because you got the wrong degree but now have to earn at a level that will keep you out of bankruptcy.

I think you should pursue things that interest you in your spare time. I ran JPF while working full time for a decade before I focused entirely on it for the past 2 decades. I also played in bands and wrote over 2000 songs in a 10 year window. I wrote, directed, produced and acted in 2 plays of my own and 23 others. I worked in radio at the #1 radio station in Indianapolis learning all about the business as an volunteer intern while also employed as a mid level manager at a major corporation. Because I was more qualified than anyone else at the station in most things (much to my surprise) I had the run of the place and was representing the station at live major concerts, taking care of VIP's and artist relations with record labels and top artists of the day, doing production, writing the news, putting together audio commercials and promos (sadly, I wasn't very good at the technical aspects to be honest but I learned a great deal anyway), I learned all about how songs were chosen for airplay, I learned a lot of dirty secrets of the business and because I was a volunteer, I came and went when I wanted, and got to learn about what was interesting and avoid doing the stuff I didn't like. They had a high functioning mature person they could trust for free and I got a complete master class in how a major radio station was run from Profit and Loss, to Sales and Marketing, to News and Production to On Air Programming and mixing it up with high paid on air talent. The only thing I didn't get to do was host a show, but I did play characters, did call ins, made tons of public appearances and it was a blast. I also learned that it could be a sleazy business when it came to actually playing music which served me well running JPF and talking to people in all areas of the industry from actual first hand knowledge and experience, all without taking a class or having to take a terrible paying slave job getting coffee for everyone all day like most interns. They kind of thought I was crazy because I made so much more money at my "day" job and they didn't understand they 100+ hour work weeks I was putting in sometime between the day job and working there, but it was my passion. It even helped me in my day job because I was doing some high level stuff at the radio station that I hadn't been able to do at the day job, but once they knew I had those skills (I didn't tell them I had done it until I had decided to stop) they had me doing activities there that no one else at my level were allowed to do. I could go on, but you get the idea. I would work 8 to 6pm at the day job, then drive 2 hours to practice with my band, practice to for 3 hours, then drive 2 hours home, getting about 4-5 hours of sleep, but having the time of my life. I even got to take the gig that Hootie and the Blowfish gave up at the Cubby Bear in Chicago the night they got on Letterman with only hours notice before they got on the jet. All this to say I pursued my various "passions" outside of my bill paying job until I found something (or in my case CREATED something) that I was passionate about and which I could survive doing full time (which for me was always 100 hours a week or more and until health interceded, I kept doing).

I think his advice is amazing and needed. He didn't address the College portion, but I think it is part of it. Go out and DO something, don't sit back having some unqualified series of people theorizing on it, often with inherent biases and outdated ideas and viewpoints. And don't put your eggs in the basket of your passion and until you have safely proven those passions can pay your bills (and preferably before you have gotten in debt or started your family with kids to consider).

Brian


Brian Austin Whitney
Founder
Just Plain Folks
jpfolkspro@aol.com
Skype: Brian Austin Whitney

"Don't sit around and wait for success to come to you... it doesn't know the way." -Brian Austin Whitney


#1133766 - 12/17/17 09:10 AM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
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Vicarn Offline
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Vicarn  Offline
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UK
There's truth in the last line: "Never follow your passion but bring it with you".
I am dubious about the word success when associated with monetary reward, though.

Vic


It's never too late? Yes it is, so do it now.

If, given time, a monkey can write the complete works of Shakespeare maybe there's hope for me.
http://www.soundclick.com/vicarnold

http://soundcloud.com/vic-arnold
#1133771 - 12/17/17 10:30 AM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 6,388
Ricki E. Bellos Offline
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Ricki E. Bellos  Offline
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Wisconsin
It sounds like it could be great advice for the future adults of the world but would never have worked for me back in the 60s. Since the 6th grade, all I wanted to be when I grew up was an archaeologist/singer/songwriter. I spent my babysitting money on books like Tombs, Temples and Hieroglyphs and The World of Rod McKuen. My blue parents could not afford to pay for 4 years of college so I worked my ass off to pursue my passions and earned small but sufficient scholarships, and between them and working part-time and entertaining my dorm room mates for free with acoustic versions of Rocky Raccoon, I got my degree in Anthropology (minor in Sociology). That led to a short marriage and even shorter but informative career as an assistant to the Cumberland County Clerk which naturally led to a very long second marriage and even longer second career as an engineering drafter (draftsman to all you old fashioned folks), all the while keeping alive my dream of songwriting, the latter being the only thing I've done consistently, off and on, for over 50 years.

I say Rowe's advice would not have worked for me because, had I not followed my very impractical passion, albeit via a very circuitous route, I would never have arrived at this point in time, at my ultimate happy place with the love of my life, still writing from my heart and never regretting the wrong turns because in the end, they were all right turns.

Just my take.

Ricki

#1133775 - 12/17/17 11:55 AM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 18,314
Brian Austin Whitney Online content
Brian Austin Whitney  Online Content


Top 10 Poster

Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 18,314
Indianapolis, IN USA
I think you DID follow his point Ricki. If you had insisted on doing music as the only job you were willing to do, you wouldn't have what you have. Additionally, you got out pf the wrong marriage and into the right one, the exact same principle. Obviously you had a passion for the first spouse but you moved on to the one that worked out for you instead of insisting on staying together with the first. In fact, your whole pathway followed his example.


Brian Austin Whitney
Founder
Just Plain Folks
jpfolkspro@aol.com
Skype: Brian Austin Whitney

"Don't sit around and wait for success to come to you... it doesn't know the way." -Brian Austin Whitney


#1133781 - 12/17/17 08:54 PM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
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Colin Ward Offline
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Saint Petersburg. FL
I think he speaks the truth......everyone has to be able to provide for themselves and put a roof over their head, buy food and the other necessities of life. Once that part is taken care of, one can contemplate one's navel, write songs, attempt to make it as a musician, artist, writer, etc. But don't depend on a passion for something that nobody needs or wants (or is willing to pay for) until the basics of life are secured. For every Clapton or Picasso, there are 100,000 starving artists who will never make more than a pittance from their passion. And what's more, turning a passion into a career is a good way to turn the passion into "work" which everybody hates.


Colin

I try to critique as if you mean business.....

http://colinwardmusic.com/

http://rosewoodcreekband.com/


#1133791 - 12/18/17 10:39 AM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
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Ricki E. Bellos Offline
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Ricki E. Bellos  Offline
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Wisconsin
I don't know, Brian. I never thought about it that way. If I had been more practical, instead of wasting time with a dead end liberal arts degree, I could have gone for the engineering degree from the beginning, made the big bucks and ended up...I shudder to think! smile I like what he said about not following your passion but keeping it close. I guess that's where most of us are. Thankfully though, there are still artists in all fields who still go for it and bless them for their bravery...what a dull world it would be without them.

Ricki

#1133792 - 12/18/17 11:36 AM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
Joined: Jun 2011
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Barry David Butler Online content
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Barry David Butler  Online Content
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Sebring, Florida USA
I love Mike and maybe HE should run for President as he makes more sense than anybody I've heard in awhile. Ah Passion....lol I don't have any great answers. I'd like to see Public Ed have 11th and 12 grade like a 2 year college or trade school. That way nobody would graduate HS without some trade that they can make a living at. Somebody said if you have a job you love you will never work a day in your life. Of course not everybody is so lucky. I have a friend in the Computer Field that makes a lot of money but hates going to work every day. I remember when I was 24 and working in the Family Printing Business and really hated it. I woke up one freezing December day and the thought popped into my head that I'd rather be dead than work there one more day. I went in and told my Dad and Uncle that I was leaving and they didn't talk to me for ten years. One of the great slogans is don't quit your day job. As far as songwriting goes I have mixed emotions. I believe Music and Melody are the Universal Language for all people and don't really need words as everybody hears their own words. It touches people at a deep level in our Soul and there is nothing more wonderful and healing. People who can make music like that are a gift to all. It's funny that I was thinking this morning how great art is already out there just waiting to be discovered. I have cancer and believe that a cure is already out there and it is waiting to be discovered. SO I believe Passion of any kind whether you make a living or not is food for the Soul and I hope everybody finds that passion. Not sure if anything I said had anything to do with the topic but it just came out...God Bless.....Barry

#1133796 - 12/18/17 02:58 PM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
Joined: Jul 2006
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Michael Zaneski Offline
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Michael Zaneski  Offline
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California
Brian, I think most parents have some form of talk with their kids that encourages practicality over passion when it comes to career choices, except for those with hippie DNA, perhaps. But that can backfire cuz kids rebel against their parents wishes.

Maybe we should add a mandatory class to high-school studies. A psychology course that looks specifically at the power of advertising and media (cult of personality, etc.) and how they manipulate and create 'faux' passion (to be like those we admire), regardless if there's any affinity talent-wise.

While (perhaps) at the same time starting up ad campaigns that make health care, sales, construction work (and other rising job markets) as well as Trade Schools seem more sexy, lol.. I'd love to create the commercial that can find an angle on making sanitation work a glamourous prospect. smile This sounds silly, I know, but think about it. It's fighting fire with fire. Nah..I'm sure all that has been attempted and failed at..Still, it would be fun to see a sexy sewer worker, lol..

But I can't help keep seeing two images from "The Graduate" in my imagination: "one word, Benjamin..plastics.." and near the end of the film, Benjamin, at Elaine's wedding to someone her parent's approved of, yelling "Elaine! Elaine!!" The movie both symbolically AND literally deals with issues of "coming of age" and finding one's own way in the world..and there's nothing more satisfying than seeing Benjamin and Elaine in that bus at the end..do they know where they are going or what they are going to do? Nope.. But they DO seem excited by the prospect that it's gonna be an adventure fueled by following their hearts. That's the power of passion..when you're young..it wins out over plastics quite often, as it should.

Youth is a time to explore boundaries, try different things, and find out who we are. I don't think growing up should be about avoiding careers that offer no return on investment, or (more generally) about avoiding mistakes by over-planning our lives to follow some safe, practical outline--then you get a culture of grown-up children who don't know how to handle failure. Failure, false starts, bad decisions, poor career choices..these things make a twenty-something stronger. Those things are experiencial, and that holds more sway in a young psyche than the advisorial.

Mike

Last edited by Michael Zaneski; 12/18/17 05:48 PM.

Fate doesn't hang on a wrong or right choice
Fortune depends on the tone of your voice

-The Divine Comedy (Neil Hannon)
from the song "Songs of Love"
from the album "Casanova" (1996)
#1133801 - 12/18/17 05:28 PM Re: Daily Distractions 12-16-2017 (Best Advice EVER) [Re: Michael Zaneski]  
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 2,829
Barry David Butler Online content
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Barry David Butler  Online Content
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Sebring, Florida USA
There is no one answer to this age old problem. It used to be you did what your dad did or you worked on the family farm and that was that.


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Mar 16th, 2017
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"Sometimes reaching a goal earlier than planned is a great achievement. It shows you have worked hard, pushed ahead and made it happen. However, sometimes reaching a goal far past your original deadline, long after you wanted to complete it, and after the accolades you might once have gotten for the achievement are over, it is an even greater achievement. This shows you never gave up, due to adversity, deficit, criticism and those little life detours that end many dreams and goals. In many ways, this is a reason for even more pride!" -Brian Austin Whitney
Today's Birthdays
Jerry Jakala (71), Jonas Lengstrand (38), joseexist (53)
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