*This blog was discussed in our FreeAgentUnderground Show today, you can hear it in entirely by clicking the audio link at the bottom of this post.
"White Christmas" is a classic Christmas movie that I own and watch every Christmas season along with "It's a Wonderful Life" (my favorite). I was watching the other night and keyed in on a quick exchange between the two leading characters, Bob and Phil.
It's a profound banter about putting off what's really important.
In the scene, Phil is irritated at Bob's focus on work and fame and his lack of effort put into relationships. Here's how it goes, and the point culminates in the last line that Phil rattles off:
Will you leave me alone?
Because you're a miserable, lonely, unhappy man.
You're wacky. I'm a very happy man.
Well then you're happy for the wrong reasons and that's the same as being lonely and miserable except it's worse.
You know, you're off your nut about a mile and a half, I got everything in life I want.
Except the most important thing…a girl.
Well…I'll get around to that one of these days.
My dear partner, when what's left of you gets around to what's left to be gotten, what's left to be gotten won't be worth getting whatever it is you've got left.
What first got me was Phil's quip about Bob being happy for the wrong reasons. What did Bob base his happiness on? He says he has everything in life he wants. And in the movie, I admit I appreciate that he is a successful free agent! He does what he loves (singing and dancing), he brings joy to others, and he's well off financially. But I can see Phil looking into the future. Someday Bob will likely lament nobody to share his life with, thus Phil's perspective.
So...what is your happiness based on today? Comfort and security, or purpose and meaning?
Then the last line is a doozy. You might read it again (I had to). Are you putting off a life you feel gnawing at you? If so, how long will you?
You have a core purpose made up of your cares, passions, joys, dreams, strengths, abilities, talent and more. For you to live a life of real consequence, you need to be fully engaged in all of these for the majority of the hours of your days. As 'work' takes up the best of your days and energy, you must be fulfilling your purpose in your work. And to fully fulfill all those aspects, my experience is that it's immensely hard as an employee, as no company can be committed to your purpose, but only to theirs.
So...how long will you put it off? If you wait till you're old, tired and retired, we won't get your best. We need it now.
Read this line again again, let it sink in:
"When what's left of you gets around to what's left to be gotten, what's left to be gotten won't be worth getting whatever it is you've got left."
Things won't get better. You have to make them better.
Agent Kevin Miller
Free Agent Underground Show - A message for today from 'White Christmas'