it’s ok to move on

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With a title like that you might think that I’m quitting this blog (ha! you can’t get rid of me that easily), or that I’m quitting my job (and miss out on homemade steak fries, grilled steak, orange citrus pound cake two days in a row, apple pie and Pabst Blue Ribbon beers to celebrate a co-worker’s recent citizenship? That’s just this last week. And we’re having a picnic together next week on our lawn. So no.), but it’s not! The big news is that Sinead O’Connor has announced she’s retiring this song.

Part of her explanation (which you can read here), says:

“After twenty-five years of singing [Nothing Compares 2U], nine months or so ago I finally ran out of anything I could use in order to bring some emotion to it. … My job is to be emotionally available. I’d be lying. You’d be getting a lie.”

Her words made me stop and think. For all of us, but especially those of us in creativity-first jobs, if you realize you’re phoning it in, it’s ok to say phoning it in defeats the point and then stop doing that thing. Purpose isn’t found in the tasks we perform by scraping our internal reserves. Idealist Joanna is done speaking and now Realist Joanna will start: If only we could all be in position where we get to make that choice ourselves.

photo: of a recent tour of the design studio responsible for Heath Ceramics, and where it appears as if they never need to phone anything in.

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