Be Stubborn

me and my lover (1 of 1)I’m gonna tell you a little about my wife, Michelle.  It might be a long one. So if this post doesn’t apply to you or you don’t want to spend the time, feel free to skip it, but know that it’s important to me,  and it won’t be the last one

Lots of the details about us meeting and dating have become a little fuzzy, for me, over the years. It doesn’t mean they weren’t important, it just happens… but I promise that the best ones are still in my brain and they always will be. Even when I am old and losing my mind I will hold on to those memories of Michelle. I’m sure of it.

The memories started in high school, where we met, and they’ve been happening ever since. Things fell into place, it all just seemed to fit. We fell in love quick and didn’t look back. The reason we fell in love is because we are the same. Anyone who knows either of us well, know that we agree on almost everything. People have said  its not a good thing to be the same, or that ‘opposites attract’ in a relationship. For us, that was not the case. And we will get along just fine, for a long long time. I love being married to her.

Even though we are so similar, I’ve still had a lot to learn from Michelle. Tons actually. A big lesson she taught me was to do things that I like – and to be passionate about them. She hasn’t said it, but she has taught me through her stubbornness. We are both stubborn, she is just stubborn in a good way.

When Michelle has to do something that she doesn’t like, she actually just doesn’t do it. She will replace it with something she prefers. (That’s not entirely true, cause she does do lots of stuff she doesn’t want to do, but only if its to help someone else) When she is supposed to go to bed early, she stays up late. When there are lots of dishes to wash, she wants to go out to eat instead. In college, when there was a class she didn’t want to go to, she would take a nap on the grass outside of class. Ha. Its stubbornness, but I love it, it’s cool.

Michelle studied art in college because she wanted to. I don’t think she thought about doing anything else, cause its what she wanted to do. She usually gets things right the first time. There was no pressure, and maybe thats why she did it, but she loved it. My experience in school was the opposite. I felt pressure every day. I wanted to push  back, or turn away, but I didn’t dare. I studied what I was ‘supposed to’ and just tried to keep up with all the other kids in my class. It was painful.  Doing something I desperately didn’t want to. I remember leaving the library late at night, a lot, feeling miserable, and walking over the the ceramics studio to meet my wife. She would be working so hard on something, so tired, but never ready to go home. Because I’m stubborn too, I know how to treat a stubborn person. You have to just wait patiently. Never rush them. And while I waited, I watched her. These nights go under the best memories category, the ones I won’t forget.  I loved watching her. It was inspiring  (and really sexy) but they were depressing at the same time. I was always impressed, but jealous that she could feel that way about something, especially school.

I think that this is why I was able to realize that I needed to change my mind about what I planned on doing for a career (you can read my ‘about me’ write up to learn more about this). I could finally see that it was possible to be completely interested, even in love, with what you do. I needed to be more stubborn like her. I needed to skip doing something that I didn’t like, and find something that would make me more happy. I feel fortunate that I did, and I can’t thank Michelle enough.

We are here in New York because of Michelle’s example of stubbornness. We are loving it. Not just seeing a new city, but being able to do things that make us really happy, she is at home raising our son, and I am working a job that I love. . I am really really grateful. I know how that all sounds. It probably sounds arrogant, or annoying, but I badly don’t want it to. It is probably annoying, and I’m sorry. But the only reason I am writing about it on a stinking blog, is because I am adamant that anyone can do what makes them happy. I think about it all the time. I know its possible, not likely very easy, but it will be the best thing you ever did.

People know what would make them happy. I promise. Everyone does. I talk to people about it every single day. Admit it. You know what you are passionate about. But too many people are doing the opposite of what they want to be doing. Its a bad fit, and they know it. You know what would be your dream job.  But we get pressured into doing something else. When we start college, or before or after, we are convinced we must become something bigger or better. But whats better than doing something you actually care about? Why would anyone become something other than what they are into. Some folks are lucky enough to have found it early on, and are doing it, but if you aren’t one of them, just go and do it. Seriously. Pursue it like you would pursue your soul mate.

I suppose we shouldn’t be married to our career, or refer to it as a soul mate, but we might as well love it. Actually, I take it back,  maybe we should treat our careers more like a marriage, because most of us will spend just as much time with it.  I think we should approach the search for our career in the same way we approach our search for our partner. It shouldn’t be any different, should it? Because being in love with what we do will make us far more happy than feeling stuck doing something that we don’t love anymore, or feeling like it’s not a good fit. When people feel this way in marriage it often leads to divorce. Its becoming very common. Its really sad.

Why don’t more people split with their jobs then? Divorcing your job is probably cheaper, less paper work, and less heartbreaking than leaving your spouse. I am not an advocate for divorce unless its from a miserable career. If you are comfortable, and enjoy what you do, but feel like the fire is getting puny, then look for ways to be excited about what you are already doing. Find ways to re-ignite your desire. For those who haven’t started your career, take your time and try to get it right the first time. Its possible.

Careers are long, find something you like and be passionate about it.

I love you Michelle. Thanks for being so stubborn.

 

 

13 Comments

  1. Marie Medrano says:

    January 23, 2014 at 11:03 pm

    Clark, you inspire me. I’ve always known since I met you there was something special about you. This is beautifully written! I loved every word.

  2. John says:

    January 23, 2014 at 11:45 pm

    This really struck a chord with me. Next Friday is my last day of my job before I start barber school full time. It’s so encouraging to hear from someone who’s been down this road. Thanks.

  3. John Bell says:

    February 12, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    This is amazing man, Thank you! I am basically going through this right now. I feel lost and basically make myself think I’m in love with what I do but I don’t. This really opened up a new door. Thanks for the inspiring words.
    -Instagram follower.

    • J. Clark Walker says:

      February 16, 2014 at 7:41 pm

      thanks. I am glad it helped. its not an easy thing changing what you do, for lots of reasons, but seriously, just go for it. your days are not meant to be spend doing something you hate for a living. let me know what happens!

  4. says:

    August 9, 2014 at 11:25 pm

    When I read this post, I couldn’t help but think about my favorite book, The Alchemist, by Paulo Coelho. Both him and yourself spoke the truth of living one’s personal legend and that we are in control of our own lives. Very uplifting message, one I need to be reminded of quite frequently.

  5. says:

    October 3, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    This was a great article Clark! You and your wife’s story is inspiring. I am new to your blog though I look forward to future posts by you and the inspiration it provides.

    • j. Clark Walker says:

      October 3, 2014 at 2:55 pm

      Thanks alot. I appreciate you taking the time to read it. Hopefully I can get back on the guitar and keep writing stuff! ! ! (I get real lazy)

  6. says:

    March 20, 2015 at 12:15 pm

    Thanks for sharing. This was an awesome read. I liked it because it also relates to me. Seriously man, I love your feed, and I only just discovered you had a blog! *fist pump. My girlfriend and I plan to visit NYC in 2016 (I know, ages away), and I’d love to come and get my hair cut. Thats if i want one by then haha..I’m trying to grow it out now. Anyways, keep on keepin on.

    -kel

    • says:

      March 2, 2016 at 11:17 pm

      yo. i think i only just saw this. im sorry! i am digging your trip and your adventure and your photos so much. dont ever stop, so that I can live vicariously through you and your travels. but if you do, stop by on your way home for sure…. If you dont want to cut off all that beautiful hair, then just come sit down anyway, and we will do a pretend cut, and just hang out and talk. fine with me.
      be safe out there.

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