Last night, I watched Caine’s Arcade, a short film about the arcade a 9 year old boy from East LA has built by hand. Using cardboard boxes from his dad’s car parts store and a whole lot of imagination, Caine has created an arcade that rivals any you’d find downtown or at Chuck E. Cheese’s. Take a look at the movie at the Caine’s Arcade website.
I made a small donation – enough to buy one of Caine’s fun passes. A kid like that deserves a chance to go to college. If you look at the ticker on the right side of the page, you’ll see that it’s as if the entire Internet has bought a fun pass.
Take a few moments to watch it and remember the sheer joy of building something because you imagined it was possible.
Do you remember ever having that joy? I remember being 7 or 8 years old and spending hours working on a handwritten newspaper. Or on franchising my lemonade stand. I never went into the detail that Caine did, but I do recall how much I loved working at something and seeing my imagination turn into reality.
From newspapers and lemonade stands, I suppose it’s no wonder I’ve moved on to run a business consulting firm and Consultant Journal, a blog. My passions and interests are still part of what I do every day.
When you love doing something, you’ll put your heart and soul into it. You’ll do it just because. And that makes it easier to weather the storms – and to celebrate the good times.
But, while most career experts will tell you your work must absolutely be what you love to do, I disagree. I believe in getting to know what you love in life – and then building a life that connects with that. So it’s okay if you just have a strong like for your work – if it means you can get to what you love at the end of the day. Maybe that’s time with your family, time for the ski slopes, money for that Hawaii trip, a chance at an early retirement, a flexible schedule or something more. I once met a man who’d started a booming tech firm simply because it let him hit the mountains by late afternoon and go snowboarding. He loved snowboarding and it drove him to work hard at his business. I imagine he still had a strong like for his work, but he made it clear that snowboarding was what he lived for. Not surprisingly, many of his employees loved snowboarding too.
Connect with your life’s passions. Remember when you were willing to take the risk of doing what you loved. Take a look at Caine’s story and learn from it. Maybe it will shape your business.