It’s Friday evening here in New Zealand, and another work week has just reached the end of the line.
My commuting costs were nil, my conversations with coworkers and managers were limited to the comfortable arms-length of phone calls and email, and no one disrupted my work by demanding that I attend to their needs right now, like some sort of needy toddler.
To this slightly-reclusive introvert, it was bliss.
When I was studying at university, my aspiration was to become a professional gambler.
That’s right – I wanted to make my millions through betting on football matches. Now, I’m not talking about going to the bookies and taking a punt on the season’s designated punching bag because they are paying $20 to beat the best team in the league and just continuing to place irrational bets because I “have to make it back”. That’s what is known as problem gambling, and I was going to become a responsible gambler.
When I was 16 and taking a gap year because I was sick of the banality of academia, and nowhere near ready mentally to take on a degree course, I took whatever job I could find.
That job was driving forklifts, lugging bags of concrete and cutting timber to size for builders. Everyone at my work hated their job. It was a place that “dreams go to die”, as I was advised by a colleague when I first started working there. I was apparently making a huge mistake.
No man is an island. It’s a commonly accepted truth that we all need human interaction in order to be fulfilled, but I have a confession. I avoid social occasions where I can.
I’m not an agoraphobic hermit, and I do enjoy spending time with my partner, wider family and a few close friends. You could say that I am more of a peninsula than an island, but I have never understood how people enjoy work Christmas functions or weddings.
There couldn’t be two more opposite characters to juxtapose.
You have the calm, serenity of Gautama Buddha, who would meditate peacefully under a waterfall in the knowledge that all things are one. With Donald Trump, you have a bombastic, egotistical, billionaire turned politician who is rioted against when he is elected president.
But their qualities aren’t mutually exclusive. That’s right – in this post, I am going to explain why you should enjoy the best of both mindsets.