Stop Letting Work Define Who You Are

We often fall into the habit of letting our work define our entire being. And it is difficult to get out of this mindset. Sometimes, I wish I were a little braver.. That I will be able to stop living life the way others have defined it for me, break out of the moulds, get out of the silly rat race, and start truly living life.

But then, there are bills to pay. And someone has to feed the family. So I put off all my wildest dreams of like travelling the world (on a really shoe string budget), or setting off to some far flung place and anchoring myself there for like the rest of eternity...

And i know that slowly the bright spark in me is dying and slowly fading. I am very much less cheerful nowadays. I prefer to be left alone. I desire for something more than this seemingly mundane life. I am not making a living. I am making a "dying" literally.

Don't get me wrong. It is not that I am not happy at my job. But sometimes, I just get the sense that this isn't what I should be doing. Reaching home past seven pm on each weekday is not something that I desire. (Of course, i know there are those of you who reach home much later than I do).

I need to find new inspiration, set new priorities, find my purpose and live my life with passion.

So my dear friend: Please don't let your work define who you are. I am trying hard to do that. We deserve so much more than all these.


  1. Well said, but indeed sometimes it is so hard to do. Especially when the reality of life hits you, you can't help but try and conform to make a living.

    But like you, i will try to enjoy what i do, and live life the way i hope to.

  2. I am seeing my past image in you and at that time I was thinking of Getting of Rat Race. I went all out for it and now quite close to getting out of the race soon.

  3. Hi Uncle CW8888,

    I think you are not getting out of the rate race, but retiring from the rate race.. :)

  4. Hello FF,

    I like reading your posts. Like CW8888, I can identify myself in you during my early working career.

    MBA, overseas education, work, etc are all external "cloaks" we put on to "peacock" ourselves to strangers.

    As a O'level school leaver, I took night classes to have more "paper", climbed the career ladder to have better "titles". But at the end, I discovered what I need was inside of me all the time; not external.

    I wish you happiness in your search. Part of the joy is discovering the one thing that matters to you most!

  5. Hi,
    Almost everyone of us not sure of what we want from life when we are young & usually restless-even successful professionals. Take your time, you will settle down automatically when your age has come. Meanwhile, try to enjoy what you have now.

  6. Glad that so many of you can identify with this post. It means I am not alone!

    I really hope that I will settle down when my age has come =) Though I don't know how long more I will live and at what age I am supposed to settle down. Just feel like leaving it all behind and travel the world sometimes...don't you ever get that sort of feeling?

  7. Yes, i was very restless when i was young. At times, i also felt like leaving it all behind;
    Even now sometimes , i joke with my wife when we are lying on our bed, dead tired about to fall asleep; i say, "How nice sleeping is and i wish i never wake up again." And you know what? My wife agrees wholeheartedly. It looks like the feelings of leaving it all behind never really leave us human beings, no matter at what age. Ha! Ha!


    When you think you have settled down in your life, this "feeling" may returned to visit you, especially when you are undergoing extreme stresses of daily living. It happened to me at the age of late 30s or just past 40. It may happened to you too. Hope not.
    Ha! Ha!

    i think we have to adopt the saying, "Live and let live" in order to carry on living the way we want to live.
    My 2 cents worth.

  8. Thanks for your words of wisdom. I really appreciate it.


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