I posed this as a question to myself today. Vikki and I were discussing her Buck You business when I found myself envying her motivation. By creating her own range of ethical horse gear and by giving lessons on a new, science-based yet ethical way of training horses, she is truly in her element. It’s a dream vocation and I couldn’t be happier for her.
But what about me? If someone asked me what my job was or what I did for a living, I would not have an answer. I don’t really have a job, I just kind of do stuff that interests me in that moment. Lucky for me, Vikki is a grown up so she makes sure that we don’t starve to death.
Of course, there is SMELLYOURMUM.COM. In all honesty though, that doesn’t take up much time; all the hard work was done years ago so it now ticks along nicely, requiring little in the way of maintenance. And it certainly couldn’t be considered a job or work: I spend more time on this blog than I do on that. Likewise, buying and selling antiques and collectibles for Quirkabilia; I am more than happy to do it, as long as it doesn’t take up much time.
In short, money does not motivate me. It doesn’t get me out of bed early, it doesn’t make me do things I don’t want to do just for a pay cheque and I will suffer little interferance in my day to make or earn it.
I’ve always been like this. As a child, my grandparents would encourage me to boost my pocket money by offering up the chance to do odd jobs around their house in exchange for cash. Wanting that filthy lucre for sweets and toys (or sweets and music, as I got older), I would say yes only to regret it when the aforementioned task debt was due. One of three things would typically happen:
- I would do the bare minimum required or expected of me. Or less.
- I would do a completely half-arsed job. For instance, car cleaning would just be me lobbing buckets over vehicles.
- I would do fuck all knowing that my nan would take pity on me and let me keep the money anyway.
I clearly had zero respect for money and even less desire to do that much to get it. This trait continued into my teens and beyond. I cannot tell you how many times I would take on a part time job as rent was due, only to think “fuck it” and just not bother going in, or quit, or both. It soon became very clear that me and jobs were never going to get along, so I decided to rescind myself from those “opportunities” altogether.
Fame was my motivation as a youth. More succinctly, the immortality that can be rewarded to famous – or infamous – individuals. Like a lot of us with a nihilistic outlook, it can be a mind-fuck to think that your life means nothing, so you at least want future generations to know that you here. Fame is very attractive to insecure anti-Christs, like I was.
So that was the thing that drove me from my late teens until a few years ago. As time has gone on, and as I have been in the position to release music that I created, be in and make films and write books, that urge for fame lessened. It isn’t something that can really be accurately measured so when does enough become enough? I was quite happy with the meagre amount I had accumulated and subsequently lost interest. Instead of the band being everything, ever it became a burden. Sad but true.
My book covers all that in much more detail than I can put here, but I eventually realised enough was enough. But then what?
This was what I mentioned to Vikki earlier. I said that I wasn’t ever motivated by money and I am no longer motivated by fame. I still get out of bed in the morning and do stuff, so what drove that? Being Vikki, she has me nailed often years before I figure stuff out for myself. Her answer was succinct: happiness.
And she is right. The whole of my 2017 so far has been about seeking happiness. It is something that has mostly eluded me throughout my 45 years so I owed it to myself to devoted time and energy in finding the secret to a peaceful, chirpy brain. I have no doubt it will be my most important mission. My goal? To find that happiness then pay it forward. The fact that the latter increases the former is a not-exactly-surprising after effect.
I am still confused. But then, aren’t we all?