“What is your life’s work?”

Once you check the boxes on the things you think you’re working for, like financial security, you start to ask, “What is your life’s work?”

via Neil Grimmer: Shout Your Ideas From the Mountaintop (99U)

One of the things I love about working at GoDaddy is that the ambitions of the company as a whole (drastically shifting the world in favour of independent ventures) is incredibly close to my own personal ambitions (help small businesses do more with the web).

Up until joining GoDaddy a couple of years ago, that personal mission was fulfilled through extracurricular effort, like organizing WordPress meetups and leading technical workshops.

I’m still doing a lot of that, and it’s great, and I don’t want to stop doing it any time soon, but now I’m starting to zoom out and wonder about the things that are distinctly my own.

What if your life’s work isn’t your profession?

From being a cartoonist to having a radio show to writing a book, there are a lot of ambitions  I had as a kid that I never bothered to pursue.

So now I’m wondering… is there an opportunity for that? Can I make those things a reality? Can they be more than just wishy-washy childhood dreams?

(Yes, I was a strange child.)

The thing is, with all of the tech that’s available now, even just some rudimentary apps on our phones, I can do all these things.

To be a cartoonist, all I need to do is draw and upload images to Facebook, a la Sarah’s Scribbles.

To host a radio show, I just need to record an audio track on my phone and upload it to Podbean.

To write a book, I just need to write it in Google Docs, and export it as an ePub.

And maybe that’s the first step to figuring out what my life’s work could be, just doing it?

If only it was that simple, right?

Time is a challenge.

It’s hard finding the time to do all these things. There are only so many hours in the day.

I try my best to allocate time to everything, blocking out chunks of my calendar for specific tasks, but even then it’s not enough.

Things happen. Stuff comes up. And most of the time, the side hobbies get gobbled up because of it.

I love the work that I do at GoDaddy. I love the challenges that we’re trying to solve and that we’re in a position to make a real impact on small businesses around the globe.

But is it my life’s work? Maybe my life’s work is down a path I haven’t even stepped onto yet?

There’s no “diversity of views” on the internet.

That “diversity of views” so dear to past regulators is pretty much dead and buried on the Internet, where filter bubbles, marketing algorithms, and sophisticated information warfare ensure most Americans see only what they already believe, and ownership is concentrated beyond anything we’ve seen in the offline media world.

via Govt to Journalism: Screw You (NewCo Shift)

With the United States changing course on net neutrality, I’m certain that this is just going to get worse.

The things that happen to you shape your story.

The thing about this business is that you can plan all you want but it’s the things that happen to you that really shape your story. All you can do is seek out opportunity and increase likelihood. That’s it. I use this awkward analogy a lot to describe our business: Client services is like hockey. You don’t really aim and shoot at the goal. You just create chaos in front of the net.

via Postlight is two years old: looking back

I honestly wonder what the percentage breakdown of life is, between the actions we take and the reactions we make, from when we wake up in the morning to when we crawl into bed at night.