I learned a very valuable lesson in life many years ago. I learned that no matter what your occupation, it doesn’t matter how much money you make. If you’re not happy with what you do for a living, in the end, it’s not worth it. Back in 1996, I had a job I really hated. It required me to be someone other than myself. It was an incredibly tough job for me and it got to the point where it was turning me into a really ugly person around my friends and family.
If you’ve never watched this show, you should! Deutsch featured a guy named Nathan Sawaya—a man who graduated from a top law school and became a big corporate lawyer with a healthy six-figure salary. Sawaya hated being a lawyer and actually quit his job as a lawyer to become a freelance Lego® artist! Apparently, his love for Legos started when he was just four years old. He makes these incredible sculptures and portraits completely out of Legos—the Statue of Liberty, Han Solo encased in Carbonite (from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back), a life-sized speedboat, Rodin’s “The Thinker”…you name it, he’s probably sculpted it.
Now, you’re probably thinking, “This guy’s gone completely nuts!” Well, not really. It may sound odd, becoming a freelance Lego artist. But Sawaya’s pieces use thousands of bricks and actually sell for tens of thousands of dollars. So he’s probably making about the same kind of living he did as a lawyer. But you know what? It’s not even the money that really matters. It’s that he’s much happier being a Lego artist than he ever was as a lawyer. And THAT, my friends, is the DIFF—finding out what you love and making a life out of it.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering, I quit that job after only six months and I must say, it was one of the smartest decisions I ever made. Since then, I’ve been very happy being a copywriter.