If it makes you happy, it’s what you’re supposed to do.
~ Emmanuel (Pat Rodegast)
I’m a firm believer in this statement. I spent the majority of my career clawing and climbing up the success ladder. At first I was very happy in my chosen profession (advertising media planner/buyer and later, advertising sales) but after awhile I became discontent and eventually I became miserable. Getting up every day to go where I don’t want to go is not the way to spend my life, I decided.
Well, in its glorious way, life unfolded. Into my mind popped an idea. After I had dog-sit for free a few times, I thought that it might be worthwhile to start charging for my service. And so was born my dogsitting business. I make less money now than I used to in radio and TV ad sales and it’s definitely less glamorous. No more fancy parties or extravagant trips. But guess what? I’m happy.
I’m actually extremely happy. I’m surrounded by unconditional love 24/7 and the dogs keep me laughing. Over the years I’ve discovered that this is what I was meant to do. There’s a certain peace in my life now and I truly believe that working with dogs is my calling. In the past few years I’ve studied to become an Animal Chaplain and will be officially ordained next year. I’ve officiated pet memorial services and helped people in their grief when they’ve lost their precious animal companions. I’ve said prayers over dogs as they’ve been euthanized. And I’ve comforted the owners during that awful time. I’ve spent time with dogs who have been abused and tried to comfort them and let them know that not all humans are horrible beings.
This is what I’m supposed to be doing. This is what I believe I’ve been put on this earth for. It’s not much, but at least I think it’s enough. It’s enough for me anyway…
So remember this quote: “If it makes you happy, it’s what you’re supposed to do.”
Are you happy doing what you do? Do you believe that statement? Or do you believe that suffering with a job that makes you unhappy is just the way it is?
Hi, dear Michele! Bless you, bless you, bless you! Please don’t think that what you have chosen to do with your life, your calling, is “not much.” The world needs caring, compassionate people like you. The animals need you. Grieving families need you. The service you provide is of tremendous value to society. I admire you, Michele!
It was serendipitous that the idea popped into your head and led you to a satisfying and rewarding career. Many people stay trapped in jobs they hate and never realize their calling. Mrs. Shady and I both had careers associated with advertising. I wrote, shot and edited TV commercials and she worked in radio and TV ad sales. She ended up working side by side with me at the MTV style station I have told you about. Later we had our own business as executive recruiters for ad agencies coast to coast. We can both testify about the personalities, the egos, the pressures and the high stress nature of jobs related to advertising.
I certainly do believe in that quote. If you aren’t having fun, if your job seems more like work than play, then you can and should make a change and find something else to do, even if it involves training to learn new skills.
Happy Wednesday to you, dear friend Michele!
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Thank you so much Shady! I really appreciate your kind words.
What a cool gig, recruiting for ad agencies! Did you happen to ever work with a DC agency called Goldberg Marchesano? I was recruited by a headhunter to go work for them. I was at Williams Whittle ad agency at the time and one day I get a call out of the blue from this headhunter who said he had an opportunity for me. That was interesting. I don’t remember if I even asked how he came to call me but I ended up taking the job because it was $11,000 more than I was making at the time. It was a crazy agency. A sweat-shop kind of place really. I think — No, I know — they were pissed at me because a few months after I took the job, the Sales Manager from WCXR (Classic Rock/Washington) called me to tell me she wanted to hire me as a sales person (I had interviewed with her prior to that and at the time, they were negotiating a contract to carry the Redskins games. If they were to get the contract, she needed to hire someone with a sports marketing background. But she said if they didn’t get the contract then she wanted me to come onboard. Well, right about that time was when the headhunter contacted me. So I called her and said “What should I do??” She told me to take the job because it was so much more money and then if the Redskins contract fell through, she’d come get me. Well, they didn’t get the football contract and she kept her promise: she called me and offered me the sales gig. This was only months after I took the new job at Goldberg Marchesano. I took the job at WCXR: out of all the stations I interviewed with, that station was my number one choice and that particular sales manager was my ultimate choice. I called up to schedule a meeting with the higher ups at Goldberg but they wouldn’t take my call. They were pissed! But, I had to do what was in my best interest. And it turned out to be an awesome career move. I had soooo much fun working at that station….until they were bought out by a big corporation (Group W). Then it became a pain in the ass to get anything done. That’s a whole other story….
I left shortly after that and moved to Austin where I worked for a CHR station but left there when the Classic Rock station plucked me away. It was on its way out anyway.
Gosh, that was a long story just to ask if you and your wife had any dealings with Goldberg Marchesano!!
How long did you stay in recruiting? Your wife sounds like she had a similar background as mine. I sold for both radio and TV (Time Warner Cable) too.
When I started my ad agency (Media Without Agony), I really enjoyed working with production people. I had the most fun doing that, working with the commercial production guys. So much fun! How long did you do that Shady?
Happy Wednesday to you too…although it’s almost Thursday now. I took my mom to a cardiologist yesterday. She’s having a procedure done in the morning. She was recently diagnosed with Atrial Fibrillation and the Dr is going to shock her heart up to three times to get it back in rhythm. We have to be at the hospital at 6am tomorrow. Scary stuff. I hope it works. My poor mom is really suffering with shortness of breath. It’s horrible watching my parents age. So sad what time does to a body…
talk to you soon. XOXO
Hope all goes well with your MOM, Michele.
Hi, Michele; It’s wonderful that you are able to do what you love and also comfort others in their time of grief. Your entrepreneurial spirit is admirable too. Not everyone has the courage to quit a job they don’t like and start up a business on their own like that.
I too was miserable and burnt out in my corporate job, but the decision to leave it was made for me. This was a shock, but at the same time, I felt a sense of relief! Misguidedly, much time was wasted trying to find a similar position (not be had during a major recession), but then I gave up and started a pet care business of my own. While I miss the paycheque and perks (not that much and I sure don’t miss the stress and office politics!), it’s a joy to spend my days with dogs and to be my own boss. Happiness and contentment are so much more important than material wealth.
You said it, my friend! 🙂
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Dogladies make great friends and you, Michele, and you, Debbie, are proof of it. I admire you both for your dedication to the care and welfare of our canine companions.
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Thank you Shady!!
Thank you, Shady. 🙂 Michele and I met during the 2014 April A-Z Blogging Challenge and were amazed how much we had in common. The best thing about blogging is the friendships we make and I value yours, as well.
So true. Material wealth is overrated. Happiness and contentment is the ticket to peace of mind, I think. Although more money sure couldn’t hurt! 🙂
What was your corporate job Debbie? How long did you do that type of work?
I’m so glad that you found your happiness in the pet care business too! Do you guys have a holiday like our Thanksgiving? I have a bunch of dogs coming next week, which will be interesting to see how it all works out around here, with my Dad trying to navigate around all the dog beds with his walker. (My parents are staying with me for the winter. They’ll be here through March). I’m already planning on taking down a dog crate to make room for the dog beds and still have room for him to get through the living room.
One of the guest dogs swiped a package of hard rolls off the counter tonight and managed to scarf down three of them before I caught her. With my folks here, there’s all kinds of food laying around. I don’t keep things on the counters but with all the extra people here, the fridge is full so the counter becomes storage (they also eat sweets in the mornings: muffins and cinnemon rolls, etc….stuff that I just never have here). So we have to gate the kitchen and one of us forgot to pull the gate so Miss Daisy got herself some nice fresh hardrolls today.
THEN, I was feeding the birds and came back into the garage and she had her head in the birdseed bin: I called her name and she popped her head up and her nose was covered with birdseed!!! My Luca likes to eat the birdseed that gets kicked out of the feeder onto the ground. Then he poops out birdseed. I have to yell at him all the time to not eat the birdseed. I don’t know what’s in it that they like so much but they seem to really dig it! Crazy dogs!
Thanks for stopping by Debbie…
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More money would be nice, but not at the expense of happiness and contentment. I worked in a male dominated industry (hence my feminist attitudes), overhead crane manufacturing and repair, as the Parts Dept./Inventory Control Manager. Started as a minimum wage Inventory Control Clerk in 1976 and worked my way up. Got “downsized” in 1992.
We had our Thanksgiving the 2nd Monday in October, but it’s no big deal compared to yours, which seems to be as big as Christmas. It looks like so much fun! 🙂 I can imagine your house will be full of dogs for this big holiday. Ours will be packed over Christmas and New Year’s. I can relate to the “dog bed obstacle course”. Hope your Dad will get the hang of it.
Some dogs are such scavengers! I never leave food loose on the counter, but I do have a large, old-style metal bread box there. If you have space for something like that, it might be a solution. Is Daisy a Lab, by any chance? They’ll eat anything!
Yup – crazy dogs! 😀
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Lol. I have a metal bread box but it’s full of vitamins! 🙂
We just need to remember to close the gate. I’m just not used to having food lay around because I never have that much food and what I do have lives in the fridge. It’s an adjustment having company…
The crane manufacturing business sounds BIG! My Dad used to operate a crane in a side job that he had when I was growing up. I used to love seeing the crane in action.
Daisy is a greyhound. She acts like a Lab though. I have a few Labs who stay here and I know how crazy they are. One is so crazy about squirrels that she crashed through my screen in my bedroom window to go after a squirrel in the yard! Yep, Labs = crazy… 🙂
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What a lovely post. Changing one’s job can be difficult, but it can lead to greater happiness. I’ve liked some of the jobs I’ve had, but now I’m glad to stay at home and edit books. I get to be with my dogs almost all the time. I have a home office. Franklin and Penelope are usually on the floor right in front of or next to me. They always want to be with me, and that’s something money can’t buy. I think it’s unhealthy to stay in a job one hates, but sometimes people don’t know how to change careers.
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I’m sorry I wrote Love, Janie twice. Sometimes I type it and forget and type it again. But we can never have too much love.
And I bet Penelope and Franklin are two very spoiled dogs! They’re lucky to have their mama be with them all day.
I think staying home and editing books sounds like a marvelous job! Like I mentioned before, I’d love to get into editing… You must be so well-read! I’ll have to investigate to see if someone who doesn’t have any real editing experience can ever get into an editing gig…
Thanks for stopping by Janie Junebug! XOXO
I am so happy you are now in a job you love…you found your calling. So many people gripe about their jobs but don’t do anything. I am happy that I found a job that I love and find it rewarding. I thought of 3 things when I read this. One of my craft blogging buddies loves animals and lost 2 of her special fur babies in the past year. She is still struggling, I know. It is wonderful that you lend support to people who have lost their furbabies. The 2nd thing I thought about was actually a song, the title escape me, but part of the lyrics go like this “unhappy in your life (or something like that, REARRANGE IT!. I think they are a heavy metal band-famous band and song. The 3rd is someone I met when my mom went to craft shows. He drew and was selling his works. He was on disability because he had a mental breakdown. He was in advertising and drove daily to Toronto. He made huge amount of money but because he disliked his job but felt he had no choice because of taking care of his family, financially, he broke mentally. They lost their home and ended up bankrupt but he said it was a learning experience. He was now more happy than ever before, living simpler and enjoying what he was doing.
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Hey, feel free to give your crafting friend my contact info if she needs to talk. The grieving process can be a very long one. She can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d be happy to talk to her if she needs someone to talk to…
That guy you met is proof positive that living simpler can be the key to happiness.
I’m so glad that you like your job and find it rewarding. What do you do Birgit?
I don’t know what song you’re thinking of. If you remember it, let me know. I’d like to give it a listen.
Thanks for stopping by today!
I informed my blogger friend about your blog post. I am a Credit Counsellor. When people are in dire financial straights they come to see us. We are non-profit. “When your life’s all screwed up…rearrange it”. I wish I could remember more of the song-I know it’s famous
You’ll think of it someday… when you least expect it, it will come to you. When it does, let me know 🙂
Hi again, dear Michele!
I needed to start with a fresh comment box because G+ would not connect and I was unable to reply below your comment. Thank you for taking time to write such a long and thorough reply to my initial comment. I will try to answer your questions. Mrs. Shady and I are both familiar with Williams Whittle and Goldberg Marchesano. She left the MTV station we were both working at a few years before I did and got into recruiting for ad agencies. She worked for a company that had Williams Whittle as a client. By the time she started her own recruiting firm and I left the station to join her enterprise, she no longer had contact with Wms. We did not work with Goldberg because, IIRC, they are a business to business agency and we worked only with full service consumer shops. We worked with some agencies on the East Coast including The Martin Agency in Richmond and Crispin Porter Bogusky in Miami, but got more assignments from agencies in the midwest and southwest including Chicago (DDB), Detroit (JWT), Dallas (Richards Group & Bloom FCA aka Publicis Group) and St. Louis (D’Arcy). We also worked with shops on the west coast including Chiat Day.
I realize why the agency that hired you and the headhunter that recruited you were upset that you didn’t stay in your new job very long, but its your life and your career and you needed to go where you thought you would find the greatest career satisfaction. I don’t blame you one bit!
I started producing and editing promos around 1980 while I was still working at my first station as a newsman. By 1985 I was at my third TV station and producing, directing, shooting and editing commercials, promos, music videos and corporate presentations. I did that until the mid 90s when I joined Mrs. S as a headhunter.
I am sorry to learn that your mother needs to take time out from her visit with you in Austin to have her A-fib treated. Mrs. Shady is now a nurse practitioner and I asked her about the procedure. She assures me that cardoversion is common and routine, nothing to become alarmed about. I will nevertheless keep your mother in my prayers.
I am very happy to see all the long comments and replies on your blog, dear Michele. This is blogging at its best!
Wow, you worked with a lot of the Majors! What fun! Advertising is such a fun industry, isn’t it? It’s tough, competitive and cut-throat but fun for sure. All the parties! Lord, I remember all the parties….Well, some of them were so good I can’t remember them but you know what I mean.
Goldberg must have changed over the years because they were primarily a consumer based agency when I was there. Ikea was a big client (they won a Cleo for the TV spots they did for Ikea and it was inducted into the Advertising Hall of Fame. Great spot if you remember it. Funny!) By the time I got there (1988) they were in the midst of change, especially in their corporate philosphy. They used to be an agency that was known for their creative and their parties (and apparently lots of pot and coke at said parties (before my time). When I got there, it was just after the Pat Robertson campaign, which they handled. I heard that Marchesano used to REQUIRE daily prayer meetings for all who worked on the campaign. When I was there, one of the projects I worked was buying time periods for the 700 Club. Total change from the 70s and early 80s.
Do you ever miss doing production? I remember so fondly all the times that we’d shoot commercials or corporate videos. It was always a blast! Maybe it was just the people and not the work…
Thanks for keeping my mom in your prayers! I sooooo appreciate that!!! I’ll keep you posted and let you know how it goes.
Hi again, Michele! How did your mom make out this morning? Sorry I left the “i” out of cardioversion last night. It was late and I was sleepy. 🙂 Yessum, I do miss the creative process involved in producing video material, but the art of blogging is a satisfying creative outlet for me now.
Happy Thursday to you, to your parents and to your bow-wows!
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My mom did great this morning Shady! It only took one shock to get her heart back to the proper rhythm! But she does have a thickening of the aorta valve and a leak in the mitral valve so she will need to have those replaced. First things first the doctor will do an echocardiogram to get a good picture of exactly what they’re dealing with in the valves and arteries. She said she’ll have the surgery here and if they have to stay a few extra months, they’ll do that. I’m glad that she’s going to have it done here so I can take care of her.
I take my dad to the orthopedic surgeon next Wednesday. He wants to get a shoulder replacement so we’ll see if the surgeon will do it at his age (87). Maybe both of them will be having surgery here!
Thanks for asking about my mom!
I’m going to go take a nap now. I have to work for a psychic tonight. I’m assisting in one of his psychic development classes. I work for him probably 6-8 times a year. If he has an odd number of people show up, then I get to participate in the class because everyone needs a partner to do psychic readings on each other. It’s pretty cool…
I’m very happy to learn that your mother’s procedure went well. I hope she and your dad can get patched up while they are staying with you. You are a wonderful daughter, Michele!
I think, that you are doing a great job Michele. All dogs need love and compassion and who are better to give this than one who really love dogs?
I agree with your statement and try my best to implement this in my life too.
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Thanks Irene! I appreciate your comment so much.
Glad to know that you live by those wise words too…
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You are welcome Michele 🙂
I’ve never had a job that put me into an unhappy frame of mind. For me happiness is a mental state that carries over into unpleasant situations. I like to make the lemonade out of the sour lemons. I’ve had a few jobs where I’d rather had been doing something else, but I was always able to find something good about those jobs and I didn’t take the unpleasantness of the work with me when I left the job site.
Tossing It Out
You’re lucky about not ever having a job that you hated. I don’t know that I’ve actually ever hated a job that I’ve had. I may have hated certain aspects of the job. I know I’ve certainly become burned out in several jobs and when I did, I just found something new to do. I’m one who can’t keep doing something that doesn’t make me happy.
You have a very healthy outlook on life Lee. That’s healthy all the way around, body, mind and spirit. Good for you! That’s great.