• Shane Dillon

Pivot to Happiness

When you find yourself in a rut and having a hard time breaking out of your mundane routine, it is time to make a change.

I’m not suggesting that you up and leave your job for the open road.

My suggestion to you is, first: take time to figure out the problem. Once you have identified the problem, it is time to pivot. Pivot to happiness.

There is happiness inside of you, the challenge is to figure out how to access it.

There have been a couple of times in my life that I felt stuck. I was semi-depressed and felt like I was just repeating the same monotonous routine.

Everybody Else’s Dream Job

When I was twenty-four-years-old, I flat out hated my job in finance. Some thought I had a dream job, but I felt differently. I was the one who had to go through work unhappy each day .

I was working on a trading floor in San Francisco as an Assistant Stockbroker. For starters, I was working market hours on the west coast. Which means, I had to wake up at 3:30 AM every morning in San Francisco to be at work at 4:30 AM in order to prepare for the New York stock markets to open.

I was a walking zombie and my heart wasn’t in the job. Not only was I sleep deprived, but I had the worst boss in the solar system. My boss was pure evil and spent his days telling tall tales to his clients. He would do anything to make a buck.

Working on a trading floor is basically the equivalent to fighting over other people’s money.

My own personal money belief is that you need enough money to bring balance into your life. Too much or too little money means it is likely that money is going to cause a problem in your life.

We need to find a happy balance with money.

You are definitely not going to be happy with too little money. And, your life will certainly become complicated if you are enslaved to the idea of being rich.

Backpacking in South America for a Year

To make a long story short, I was unhappy working on a trading floor. All I did was work and sleep and occasionally took a short trip to blow some money. I was living an unfulfilled life, and I knew it!

Once I realized I wasn’t happy with my current situation, I knew I had to pivot. I thought long and hard about what to do next. For six months, I kept my head down and worked hard to save money for a transition to something new.

Then, one day while I was sitting at my desk, it hit me that I was wasting time and it was time to catch up on wasted time.

Right then and there I looked online and started looking for crazy places to travel to. When I came across a cheap flight to Lima, Peru, I knew: this is where I was destined to be. I bought the plane ticket on the spot and left for Peru two months later.

When it was all said and done, I spent a year trekking and backpacking in South America.

To End is To Begin

Admittedly, this is an example of an extreme pivot to change. Maybe, this is not what you need to do. Maybe, you just need to do something a little more rational.

A simpler change might look like signing up for classes at your local junior college or a professional MBA program. Whatever you decide, make sure you act when you find yourself stuck and in a rut.

We can all be happy!

Action Item:

What is the biggest change or risk you have taken in your life? Take time to write about it and think about how you benefited from that change.

Reading Material:

Before Happiness: The 5 Hidden Keys to Achieving Success, Spreading Happiness, and Sustaining Positive Change by Shawn Achor

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