A new look at a big question. Inspired by The Calling, a PBS mini-series.
This piece originally appeared on Citizen Effect's blog
It appears here with permission from Dan Morrison as part of What's Your Calling's Blog Tour.
A few months ago, I was invited by a friend to participate in a multimedia program called, "What's Your Calling" I was intrigued by the question because I wondered if I had one. I think of people having callings from a young age. I have spoken with many dedicated people who say, "I wanted to be a doctor ever since I can remember." I wanted to play second base for the Chicago Cubs since I was 3, but clearly that calling was never answered. The more I thought about it, the more I realized I had a calling, but it took me a long time to hear it. You can watch my "What's My Calling?" video below, but since it was recorded, I have had some more thoughts I would like to share below.
I have been wondering if I always had a calling, or if my calling came late. In high school and college, I always enjoyed and sought out community service projects. But at the same time, I played an insane amount of baseball and felt like I needed to get a job, pay the bills, make a ton of money and then think about how I could give some money away to help people.
I ended up with an amazing job. I traveled the world, worked with incredibly intelligent and talented people, and made some good money. But deep down, it wasn't enough. Or better put, it didn't make me happy. I used to think there was a hole I needed to fill, but the more and more I allowed myself to do what I enjoyed, the more I did things that were valuable to me. As I reflect back on the What's Your Calling project, I am coming to understand that I did always have a calling, I just never had the confidence to listen to it. I drowned out that voice calling me to engage in and help build communities by following what people expected me to do.
The past few years have been a journey in unlayering everything I have learned and reexamining all the securities I put in place and asking if they actually provide security or distract me from what makes me truly happy. The next logical question is, "what makes me happy?" Damn good question. I am still working on it. Citizen Effect is definitely part of it. But as I trust myself and that little but growing voice inside calling me to do things that contribute to building stronger, more sustainable and self-reliant communities, things become more clear and I wake up happier and happier every morning.
Thank you for reading and please, share your thoughts and calling by adding a comment. I would love to learn from your experiences.