Chapter 213 To Take it To the Limit, Don’t Ever Just “Get a Job”, “Get a Passion” for Maximum Equanimity Peace and Happiness (the passion will allow you to survive and thrive) McDonald’s Example:

 

 

I recall a quote by Robert Kiyosaki of Rich Dad, Poor Dad Fame.  He wrote that “JOB stands for Just Over Broke…hence the initials JOB”.  When you get into your car  on a typical Monday morning and hear the cranking noise of the engine, you may hear an echo and kicking sound.  That sound is nothing other than the giant sucking sound of your soul as you ponder another day at your job.  People think getting a job and sticking to one is the solution for equanimity, peace, and happiness.  But nothing can be further from the truth.  At one of the jobs I held while younger, I finally realized that JOB really stood for, “Just Over Broken” (broken hearted). 

 

When you typically get a job, you are selling your time for money.  And as we discussed, you are selling your soul in a way to a faceless uncaring employer.  Especially in our modern day economy where mega corporations rule the earth.  You are really a number in the area of productivity.  When I worked for McDonald’s years back, you really were just a number.  At such and such station A, station B, station C, station D, there were so many statistics and variables.  How long did it take to get the order from the customer in the drive through?  How long did the car take at the first window to pay the cashier and for the cashier to return the change?  How long did the car stay at the 2nd pickup window (should be less than five seconds), how long was the entire transaction? (should be less than 74 seconds from the moment the car drove up to the order post to the moment it left the McDonald’s parking lot).  The inside eat-in cashier station was the same.

 

From the moment the customer started speaking, how long did it take to get the order right?  (their was a timer on the top of your order screen, and taking too long the number would turn red, then after a few more seconds start blinking red, as if there was an emergency at the restaurant.  How long did it take to make change?  How long did the customer wait until he had the food on his tray? (you had a “serve” button to convey that ending transaction point).  In the kitchen, it was all the same…

 

Your “seconds” efficiency number showed how fast you were relative to the other cashiers and how fast you were on average to the drive through cashiers and presenters.  Everything was measured in terms of speed, accuracy, and efficiency.  Sounds pretty good for the customer, but what about the workers?  You are worked to the bone for minimum wage…and that is why the turnover rate at fast food places near 100%. 

 

This is not to ascribe evil onto the McDonald’s Corp.  It (corporation machine) is just doing exactly what it (the corporation machine) is supposed to do. Run out hamburgers, shakes, chicken nuggets as fast as humanly (w/ the aid of machines) possible.  But is there any standard, hope, gratitude, or measure of employee satisfaction or customer service satisfaction?   The Chicago Sun Times (I live in Chicago Illinois) noted that of all the companies on Earth, McDonald’s scored dead LAST):

 

http://www.suntimes.com/business/13286985-420/mcdonalds-rates-worst-in-customer-satisfaction.html

 

Another Yahoo.com article echoes this fact:

 

http://shine.yahoo.com/shine-food/mcdonalds-ranks-last-customer-satisfaction-index-165900737.html

 

Surely, the employee satisfaction record cannot be much different.  Why is this?  It is basically because the “machine” puts profits ahead of people.  If you could give the minimum wage employees a nickel raise but yet raise the price of a Chicken McNugget order by a nickel, the price/profit model would indicate that the employees take second fiddle to the price of the McNugget.  That is because everything, and I mean everything, comes down to the Almighty Dollar and profit… but at a price.  The price is employee and also customer satisfaction.

 

This is just one example of how today’s “jobs” can never make an employee happy.  The statistics just do not confirm it.  I started with the lowest paid “jobs”, but climbing higher in the ladder admits to no difference in the happiness of the worker. 

 

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About youngkim3000

I grew up in Virginia and went to a top tier high school, being so ambitious and wanting fame and fortune like the next kid. I received good grades and then I went off to the University of Chicago where I majored in Psychology and Economics. After a brief but successful "Wall Street" career, I realized that I was not happy and left thinking that a career in the medical field would satisfy me. Then, I did some post Bac work at Northwestern and UIC, and then ended up at UIC Medical School. The problem was I was not happy there either. The structure, the repetition, and lack of being able to be free and spontaneously creative really knocked me down. Having to be subject to constant subjective evaluations sucked my soul dry. As I sought another chapter in my life, then came the financial collapse of 2008-9 which destroyed the "nest egg" and saving that I had worked so hard to build after college--which I so "identified with". I was so depressed at the loss of career and the loss of money that I fell into self pity and a deep seated depression. For weeks on end, I could not even get out of bed. I went to many doctors who could not really help me. I took so much anti-depressant medication and also self medicated with alcohol to dull my mind. One day though, I went to the public library in Niles, IL, and picked up some books on "Self-Help". I figured what do I have to lose? I was already so depressed I could barely get through a day. I picked up books by Wayne Dyer (Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life), Deepak Chopra, Louis Hay, Ram Dass, Osho, and Eckhart Tolle (A New Earth), The Dalai Lama, and revisited my faith in Catholicism. I devoured so many books to unearth just why I was suffering so much. I learned so much about myself and realized that my deep suffering was actually a gift for me to discover myself. Simply put, those words in those books saved my life. I was taking so many drugs and my physical health was in serious jeopardy. I realized that I could not live with myself any longer, and I needed to be free. I realized...that it was my own thoughts that were making me so depressed, as was my own "life story" that I replayed over and over. I realized that my mind was busy creating negative thoughts. Thoughts are "things" and expand. I understood that you do not "normally" choose your thoughts. Just like the digestion of a meal, the mind automatically creates all kinds of thoughts whether you like it or not. Just like you do not "choose" to breathe with your lungs or "choose" to make urine from your kidneys, you "normally" do not "choose" your own thoughts. They just happen, just like digestion. And if you had a bad experience, your mind recreates the negative thoughts without your conscious consent but you are forced to relive them endless times per day. It is only through CONSCIOUS INTERVENTION that you can make your mind change course from recycling negative thoughts. This is just like your breathing. You breathe automatically, but you CAN choose to influence your breathing, you can hold your breath if you are going to dive deep in the water, or you can consciously "slow down" your breath if you are relaxing in meditation and prayer. Once I realized I did in fact have an ability to control my thoughts, I consciously redirected the thoughts to positive uplifting notions. I noted that I had built such a large ego that the collapse of it dragged me down in catastrophic fashion. A big ego is different from self esteem. Both were destroyed, but I learned to regain self esteem through positive affirmations and knowing that the negative thoughts are not reality. I was choosing definitively to live in the past via my repetitive thoughts. I was also choosing to live in an uncertain future that I painted with dreadful possibilities. I realized that if I live in the "now", the present moment, I really did not have any reason to be depressed at all. I discovered I really only live in the "now". The past and future are fictions. It is akin to a motorboat on the water on a lake. The "wake" that the boat produces is the past, my vision of the future is what I can see in front of me, but I really only exist ON the boat in the present moment. I was living my life only on the "wake" created many meters before. Soon, my self-pity slowly subsided as I learned to accept "what is" and not grasp for anything and everything that is valued by Society. I concurred that it was my own "expectations" not realized that were causing such waves of discontent. Once I dropped my self imposed sad "life story", my yesterdays, I came to my senses that there was no need to feel upset at all. That realization hit me like "a ton of bricks" and quickly lifted me out of the well, like a rope thrown down the dark walls of the deep well. I would like to share that it was only that single moment of enlightenment, a "satori" event that forever changed my life, but that was not so. It was a gradual climb out of the abyss (over about a year). I realized that my mind was like a superhighway of blazing thoughts that went through my mind over and over based on the recent past. While my "life story" was going great, I believed in those thoughts, and my ego grew such that I became arrogant and sometimes unkind. Then when my "life story" changed for the worse, I similarly believed in those new negative thoughts with the same passion (which hurt me so deeply throughout my waking hours). I noted to myself that this was why I craved so many "tranquilizers" and medicines that would halt my thoughts. I realized that I was drowning in my negative thoughts and that I was CHOOSING to believe in them. But I learned through focusing on positive affirmations, meditation and prayer, I did not need any more drugs to "halt" my mind from stabbing me to death. Through the filter of society's measure I had evaluated my own life, unable to fully realize that it was all a fiction that my mind had created. I was completely unable to live in the present before this profound awakening. My life had turned into a constant "replay" of the past, the anxiety of the uncertain future...and my destroyed ego. Because of my belief that my thoughts were the ultimate truth, I suffered so deeply... but needlessly. Once I changed the direction of my thoughts, everything changed. The way I looked at my own life changed. I realized that LIFE is not a long emergency where the one with the most toys at the end wins. I realized LIFE is something to be lived fully, and joyfully...not some series of problems to be solved. Once I realized these insights, I realized that I was the creation of my own depression. Although a devout Catholic, I am also deeply moved by the ideals of Buddhism. About Karma and "Dependent Arising"...both of which are also in the Bible (Galations 6, Do not be deceived, God will not be mocked, a person always reaps what they sow). And I was...for the better part of my life, a runaway train into disaster that I was blind to...that I had planted the seeds onto. Putting money, fame, accolades, trophies, and so forth as the ultimate end to my goals sowed the seeds of psychological calamity when the inevitable tides of change occurs in every life. A person who extols those superficial qualities dooms himself/herself to disaster. The only variable is "time". Would it take a long time to find yourself in a train wreck or a short time? It doesn't matter. What matters is how soon can you realize the truth of existence and your place in it...and rise above what Society tries to focus you to believe. Society always makes you compare yourself to others, Society never leaves you alone to just be yourself. You have to exert effort and unlearn what Society has poisoned you with. I am now doing various "work" (not holding down any soul sucking corporate job), teaching, making money through various income sources like buying items at rummage sales and reselling them through Craigslist, asking neighbors and doing work they need, trading stock options when my financial tools indicate that there is a good trade. I am not focused on any "ladder to climb" or any "prestigious career"...and I am so much happier and at peace. I'd rather be "waterboarded" that go back to Corporate America. I have also a solid equanimity, and i am OK with whatever happens, and thus accept what God and the Universe wish for me. I wish to share my newly found wisdom and hope that my story and my interpretation of my newly found contentment can benefit others and I also wish to hear similar stories of awakening. God Bless, thanks for reading my "profile" and leave me your stories of awakening. Outside somewhere is a field where all of us are the same, I cannot wait to see you there...Namaste...
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