What do you want to be when you grow up?
It seems every generation asks this question to the children of the day. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I’m sure the answers vary with each generation. When our youngest son was 3 years old, we were walking on the White Rock Pier one sunny summer day, and I asked him that very question. After a few moments of thought, he answered, “I want to be a duck” It wasn’t the answer I was expecting, but it was ok because he was the deep thinker in the family. I asked him why he wanted to be a duck. His answer was, “Well, a duck can walk, a duck can fly, and a duck can swim!” That answer was obviously well thought out, but still, I was a little worried about the child.
For me, I think Cowboy and Fireman were up around the top of the list when I was growing up. Although I’m sure professional Baseball players or pro Hockey players were up there too.
I’m not sure what your dream job was when you were young, but according to a survey of 1,567 people by the online site, Perkbox Insights, 96% of adults are not in the job they dreamt of as a child, and only 6% were successful in making their dream job a reality. 64% still wish that they were doing their childhood dream jobs as adults.
It seems we only hear about those “dreams come true” stories from celebrities or sports stars when they’re interviewed or speaking at an awards ceremony when they say “I’ve always dreamed of standing on this podium” Or when they’re hoisting a trophy like the Stanley Cup above their head.
I once interviewed famed Canadian artist, and South Surrey resident, the late Robert Genn, about being an artist. His work is in corporate and public collections, around the world. I asked him if he wasn’t a successful artist, what he would be. He answered, “A starving artist.” Robert Genn - he was an artist. That’s it. He had found what made him happy, and who he was. For him, there was no question.
owever, on the flip side, I once read a story about a dentist who came to the realization that after 30 years in practice, he wasn’t happy about his chosen profession. Oh, he was successful and had built up a good practice, but he just wasn’t happy. In the article, he said, “imagine, a 16-year-old boy told me what I should be doing for a living for the rest of my life”. Of course, he was that 16 year old that wanted to become a dentist. Granted, he fulfilled his dream, but after all the years, his dream just didn’t put a smile on his face like he had hoped!
Some of us are lucky enough to be doing exactly what we want. And if you were very fortunate, you had various jobs over the years and those experiences probably gave you a good idea of what you did want, and what you did not want to do for the rest of your life.
As the old saying goes, “Do what you love, and you’ll never work another day in your life.”
The late Beatle, John Lennon had this to say when asked the question. “When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.”
Oh, and that son of mine, who wanted to be a duck? Well, of course, he never did reach that lofty goal, but he did grow up to earn his Master's Degree in Education and become a very well-respected and admired teacher at the local High School - something he loves, and something that makes him happy.
Until next week ...
🎵 Words to live by, Jim Byrnes singing the classic Dylan song “Forever Young”
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1 // Musicians speak out about the loss of live music venues on CBC News. Blue Frog Studios and its performers sincerely appreciate the support given for live music. CLICK TO WATCH
2 // Bonnie Raitt brings home 3 Grammy Awards; “a real musician, writing and singing their own songs” as was pointed out on social media.
3 // Members of the music industry gathered for a COL to remember Vancouver musician Andre Kunkel at the Hard Rock on Feb.5, including Dreams/Arrival manager Cris Shandl. (Photo - Tracey Em)
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White Rock, BC • Canada V4B 3Z2