I peer over the monitor. No one’s looking. Perfect. A frenzy of clattering keys and we’re almost done. Just one more paragraph left. Finished! You see there’s a very good reason I wear my earphones despite not listening to music. It’s not that I dislike my colleagues, in fact they’re all lovely, but I can’t have any distractions. You see I am an artist. Well at least on a part-time basis…

I’m not the only one. Most people spend the majority of the day working a job that pays the rent with just enough change left for a cheeky pint at their local. But is it their dream to be an office temp or check-out girl? Unlikely.

Now I’m all for being realistic, bills should be paid and employment is necessary for personal and economic reasons. My quest, however, is to merge the things we need to do with the things we want to do.

But what are the alternatives? Well there are some pioneers who teach that we can have it all.

Let’s face it, the short-lived euphoria upon opening your payslip is what gets you out of bed and into the daily grind isn’t it? As a recent graduate, I’m grateful to ditch the student diet of spag-bol and if I’m lucky a frozen pizza. But what are the alternatives? Well there are some pioneers who teach that we can have it all.

In his book The 4-Hour Work Week, Tim Ferriss embraces the idea that we need not spend the most mobile decades of our lives wasted on unfulfilling careers. One of his big ideas is to automate the meaningless tasks and generate a steady income with minimal management.

I’m sold. I admit I am a disciple. A Ferrissian. His commandments are definitely a challenge to execute but perhaps that’s the point. Most of us remain within our little cubicles because we just don’t make an effort to think outside the box.

A different time

In an age of the smartphone and wi-fi, technology might be the liberator of the average employee. Could the answer lie in remote working or working from home? Or how about job sharing or more employee welcoming flexi-time?

It seems that the options already exist but the opportunities are not used effectively. Equally inspirational is One Person/Multiple Careers by Marci Alboher. Her model promotes merging one career into another by customising one’s life and in effect blending work with pleasure.

At the very least, it keeps me chugging along like a metaphorical Del Boy with my finger in many pies. So this is my plan: to do amazingly well at work while honing my craft and breaking through as a filmmaker (all within a minimal timeframe obviously), quit my day job, buy a chalet and bask in the warmth of my millions.

If that doesn’t pan out, I could always marry a rich doctor…

….I plug in my silent earphones and get back to some real work. I look at the Orwellian clock. Only 4 more hours before logging off. I’ll escape the Rat Race some day. It’s in my Blackberry schedule between paying the gas bill and buying a new pair of tights. So it’ll definitely get done. But until then it’s folks like me on the job from 9 to 5.


About The Author

Christabel Samuel graduated from UCL with a BA in English Literature and an MA in Film Studies. When she's not writing for MouthLondon, she's a filmmaker and journalist.

3 Responses

  1. colin

    Work is the curse of the drinking classes

    Oscar Wilde

    Contacted work is the obliviration of your own objectives

    Mark Twain



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