One of the most extraordinary and yet quietly routine features of our age is the assumption that we should be able to find work that we not only tolerate for the money, but profoundly appreciate - for its high degree of purpose, camaraderie and creativity. We see nothing strange in the remarkable notion that we should try to find a job we love.
It is possible to be highly sympathetic to this wish - and yet refuse to see it as either normal or easy to fulfill and to insist that in order to stand any chance of honouring it, we will need to lavish concentrated brain power, time and imagination on its underlying complexities.his is what this day of study will enable us to do.
We break down the challenge of finding a fulfilling job into a component parts:
-What do I find pleasurable?
We look at why it is so easy to be vague and confused about what we actually enjoy. We try out a number of exercise to get back in touch with our authentic interests. We look back at childhood as a source of clues. We are prompted by The School of Life’s Pleasure Menu Exercise and draw up a list of our priorities.
- I know what I like but am psychologically blocked
We look at some of the most common blocks that impede people from acting on their desires. We consider how families subtly signal what a ‘good job’ is for someone like us, and tend thereby either to close off or push us down certain avenues - without this necessarily being clear to us (or them). We look at our sense of duty, and the helpful and unhelpful ways in which it operates. We look at the fear that we don’t have enough time, and assess how true this might be - or not.
- I know what I like but am practically blocked
Many of us blame a variety of practical obstacles for our inability to progress in our chosen area. We unpick what they might be - and whether we are right to respect them as much as we do. We consider the phenomenon of ‘fixation’ around certain careers: the belief that it must be X or nothing…
- How Realistic are our Expectations
We examine how our expectations about a ‘good job’ were formed. We probe whether these are grounded in reality - and advance a helpful notion of ‘good enough’ work to guide our ambitions. We end up by considering some of the downsides of all jobs, even the most fulfilling.
Our culture has set us a devilish problem: promising us that fulfilling jobs exist while at the same time, leaving us woefully unprepared for how to discover our own aptitudes and appetites. The purpose of this day is to help to correct an epochal problem which quietly gnaws at our lives and tramples upon our legitimate hopes. We come away better able to understand our talents and to move forward on the opportunities that exist for us.
This one day workshop brings together the best of the School of Life’s Work curriculum into a single high intensity session.
ABOUT One Day Workshops
Our intensive workshops provide an opportunity to work with leading members of our faculty over the course of a highly structured session.
Sessions are limited to 22 participants and will be based at The School of Life. Food and drink, including lunch, is included in the ticket price.
An Introduction to The School of Life
To get an idea of what to expect from classes, workshops and events in our classroom, watch this short film.