Austin Kleon on Keeping Your Day Job

Writer and internet person Austin Kleon holds regular office hours over on his blog, and today someone wrote in to ask him for advice about balancing paying the bills and doing creative work. You should read the whole thing, but:

Every artist without a sugar mama or a trust fund or extreme luck has had to deal with this.

Just hang in there.

This is what I recommend: get up early. Get up early and work for two hours on the thing you really care about. Then, when you’re done, go to your job. When you get there, your boss can’t take the thing you really care about away from you, because you already did it. And you know you’ll get to do it tomorrow morning, as long as you make it through today.

The “meaning” in your job is: it pays the bills. Get as good at it as you can, because it’ll make the job more interesting to you, and it will provide you exits to another one. Then find the rest of your meaning elsewhere.

Austin has followed this idea for awhile, and always has good things to share.

As for me, I spent an hour with a health insurance broker yesterday afternoon and am suddenly feeling very wistful about my day job.

Photo: 1lenore



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