This Is My Job


I’ve already been hired.

I was recently speaking on the phone with my dear friend, Amanda, and as we talked about the progress of the two books I’ve written and the work that is still yet to be done I blurt out in a moment of clarity, “I’ve already interviewed for this job, and I’ve been hired. The choice I have now is to do my job or don’t do my job.” Amanda was confused, “Wait, what? Job?” Her confusion was totally understandable as I was coming into a realization while in the midst of our conversation. This often happens with us as we stimulate deeper understanding and creativity within each other during our chats.

My job is my life and vice versa. I have written two books since November and have not finished the first rounds of editing and development needed for me to submit the manuscripts to a professional that knows what they are doing. Do I know what I need to do to get this done? Yes. I need to get into a routine, a routine that involves writing every day. It also has to incorporate health, nutrition, play, and relationships. This is true for all of us, whether you work outside the home or not.

The fun and simultaneously frustrating part of this routine is that there is no one right way to do it. Of course, I will realize that there are elements in my routine that work better than others, and will implement those until I get to a place where I feel the flow is most effortless. And, this will be the work I must do in order to do the work.

See what I did there? Work, makes work work so it’s not work.

And now Rhianna’s song is playing in my head, sorry guys.

We’ve all applied, interviewed, and been hired for the job of life. In my mind, this happened before and during conception. Some are better at their jobs than others. Some receive multiple promotions and added responsibilities (think parenthood), while others don’t. Some do just enough to get by (survive), while others do more than their fair share and try to do the jobs of many people (you know who you are).

Our jobs will change as we change. The best part about my job is that I have complete control of it, but I don’t over-control it. Are you still with me?

Let’s apply this to children and the job of childhood- play. While children play they learn social and emotional skills (if they are interacting with other people), fine and gross motor skills, cognitive skills, and language skills. This is their job. These skills are needed in order to keep their job. Not all kids will develop skills at the same level as other kids, and that is ok. All jobs are different, right?

The more children play, the more they learn. Basically, children are going through on-the-job training. The more you get, the better you perform. The more you get, the more you learn about yourself, your interests, your dislikes, and your abilities. And, the best part about play in childhood is that, aside from safety, kids don’t really need much guidance. They will make up their own rules, use toys and other objects in new ways, and build confidence strong enough to carry them to their next promotion. As adults, we need to do two things: Play with them and give them the permission and space to play and explore.

A couple of months ago my six year old niece was making a book. A book of fairies. She worked on it like it was her job. It WAS her job. She was determined, serious, and confident. When she was done, she turned the pages reading the words she’d written, and admiring the illustrations. She sat up tall, full of pride in her work, pride in herself.

That’s what I’m striving for in my job. Work like a child.




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8 thoughts on “This Is My Job

  1. Dang… you hit the nail on the head with the routine, Jessica! I feel that I’m more in the kid realm, of just playing and doing… but not necessarily hitting all cylinders when trying to accomplish daily goals. Once I get on a roll, I’m good… but it’s kinda like throwing rocks at a can for a couple hours until one falls in and then I become focused…lol!
    But that’s totally the way Marley is, and after reading this, I think that’s perfect for her at this age. Learn a little about this, play princesses, paint, dress change, read books, dress change, play dough, dress change, play chase, dress change, role play, dress change, eat, dress change……bedtime,…. mom and dad get a drink…lol!

    • You’re right about Marley at this age. Her interests and activities should sort of zigzag a few minutes here, a few minutes there, ten minutes here, etc…She’s learning so much.
      Regarding the routine, what I’m learning about me is that I work better with daily routine staples, like in the morning I accomplish these 4 things and in the middle of the day one thing, then at the end of the day a few things. What I found doesn’t work for me is planning every minute or hour of the day. I’ve tried that a few times and it just fails.
      Thanks for your comment!!

  2. You’ll know you’ve got it right if you don’t stop until the streetlights come on. Can’t wait to read your books, Jessica.

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