Yet again, I am listening to the audio version of Ken Burns’ magnificent documentary Jazz: The Story of American Music.
One thing that stands out to me this time is a common pattern for jazz greats such as Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, Duke Ellington, Miles Davis and so forth. Almost everyone profiled across the eight discs became captivated by music at a young age, and spent nearly their entire waking hours practicing their craft or listening to others play. They became consumed with jazz, losing track of time amid the sheer joy of making music. They had so much more than a job—they had a vocation, even—as author Elizabeth Gilbert describes her passion for writing—a calling.
I’ve long noted how so few people in corporate and non-corporate America seem to come anywhere close to such captivation in what they do every day. Many of us are settling for less than the gift of doing what we love AND making a living at it. So many have fallen into jobs or careers they never intended on pursuing. Life just happens.
Burns’ documentary is interspersed with wonderful intervals of jazz. I wonder what type of music your life’s work is playing along the intervals?
Identify and relentlessly pursue what you love, and hear the cognitive dissonance give way to the sounding joy of a calling.