Why Dreams Go To Corporate America To Die

Why Dreams Go To Corporate America To Die

This blog is likely relatable for many of us.  You may be reading this from the perspective of someone who is just getting ready to enter Corporate America, dreading the idea of your future professional existence.  You may be reading this from the perspective of someone who is in Corporate America, working a soul-sucking job as a cog in the corporate system.  You may be reading this from the perspective of someone whose corporate days are now behind them, reminiscing on your days as a cubicle jockey or road warrior.  Whatever your current circumstances are in reference to the idea of Corporate America, we are all familiar with the grind to a certain degree.

Most of us have paid our dues in Corporate America because it is what we are conditioned to do.  Go to school, get good grades, graduate, get a safe secure job, and trade 60+ hours a week for our income in the hopes of being able to stash enough money away into our 401(k) by age 70+ in order to retire.  Corporate companies entice us with perks like PTO (but keep your vacation short or else you’re fired), a company car (for which the mileage is tracked meticulously by your company), healthcare (which doesn’t even exist in countries like America that only provide “sick care” to their citizens), a 401(k) retirement plan (which has retired nobody below a C-level executive before the age of 65, ever), and a break room with coffee and a water cooler (just so you can catch up with your overweight coworker about how good he thinks his fantasy football team looks this year).  

As for the pay, it varies.  But one thing is for certain regardless of your skill level, in Corporate America, employers will pay you just enough so that you don’t quit, and you will work just hard enough so that they don’t fire you.  Now that probably doesn’t seem like the mutually beneficial relationship that was agreed upon when you took the job, but that’s life in corporate showbiz baby.  

And once the honeymoon phase of being a new employee wears off and the expectation is that you’re a crafty vet at your job after only six months, you can be certain that the job will begin to take a mental toll on you.  Now, you’re expected to play office politics.  Now, you’re expected to give up time with your friends and family to “be more invested” in your job and the company.  Now, you’re always just a few weeks or months away from that ever elusive promotion.

Let’s face it, Corporate America sucks but it’s a trap most of us find ourselves in for far too long, if not our entire professional lives.  So why is it so hard to leave such a miserable professional reality for so many of us?  It’s because we think it’s good enough.  It’s because we think we are too far vested in the corporate lifestyle being that we’ve already spent so much time on a college degree, maybe an internship, and a company promising us the stars and the moon.  It’s because it’s what all of our peers are doing and we’re afraid to be the one who dares to be different.  It’s because it’s what we’ve been sold our entire lives by our parents, teachers, and bosses, and doing anything different is “too risky.”  It’s because we are afraid to see if the grass is truly greener on the other side.

Motivational Speaker Les Brown once said:  “The wealthiest place on the planet is the graveyard, because in the graveyard we will find inventions that we were never ever exposed to, ideas, dreams that never became reality, hopes and aspirations that were never acted upon.”  We at The Freedom Society are here to say that the second wealthiest place on the planet to the graveyard, is Corporate America, where dreams go to die.

Dreams go to die in Corporate America because there is a degree of certainty that comes with being a corporate subservient as opposed to leaping into a life of uncertainty and pursuing our wildest dreams.  The unknown scares us, and as mentioned before, Corporate America is “good enough.”  And that’s the biggest problem.  When something is good enough, it’s hard to leave, it’s hard to take that leap of faith in yourself to pursue something great.  When a situation is bad, it’s easy to talk yourself out of that situation and transition to a good situation.  It’s much harder to talk yourself out of a good situation and make the transition into a great situation.

We at The Freedom Society want to challenge you to go for your great situation, even if your current situation is good.  The heaviest pain that one can bear is the pain of regret.  Tim Ferriss, one of our favorite authors here at The Freedom Society, has an exercise called Fear Setting.  Fear Setting is the act of writing out your fears in a “worst case” scenario.  So try it.  What’s the worst that could happen if you left your job to go on that six month trip around the world to “find yourself?”  What’s the worst that could happen if you leave your cubicle to start that business that you’ve always wanted to, giving you the fulfillment you desire?  What would it entail to replace your income if you left your current job?  Could you reduce your expenses for a short period of time while you got back on your feet after traveling the world?  Could you pick up work at the bar down the street to generate some extra income while you looked for another job if pursuing your dreams didn’t work out?  Could you move back in with your parents while you searched for a new occupation until you were able to cover rent again?  We can assure that taking the leap is far better than spending the rest of your time on earth wondering, “what if?”

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