It's in the math, really. Trading time for money is a 1:1 proposition. Sounds fair, though, sort of, doesn't it? One to one ratio: equal, balanced, leaves nothing behind itself. The problem of course is that the perfect equilibrium, the serenity, the silence, is where the trace of your humanity should be. The zero that is the end of that equation is what is left for you, and left of you.
There is no line of work that is in itself a waste or a virtue. It all has to do with the amount of creativity used and the value created in doing the work. Sometimes we can best create value by simply being kind, being of service, extending ourselves for someone else. Value in turn will create more value, and you, having created the value will reap the benefits of having participated in the great adventure of being human. You are the multiplier of value. Your experience and personality and presence is of incredible value. You are important, and you will experience greater and greater levels of gratitude and joy if you turn up the volume on this part of you.
Exchanging time for money is the opposite of creating value. Of course, you should be paid for your work. Money is a form of compressed energy that is the natural consequence of the creative cycle. But an even exchange of time for money is a waste of your creative energy, and if we stay in those situations long enough, we forget the physical and emotional joy of creating value. This has nothing to do with what kind of work you are doing. If that work is in harmony with your core vision and values, in other words, with who you really are, then you are in the right place for the time being, and will be replenished by filling your every role with greatness. But if the situation is one that because of the combination of the situation and what you are bringing to it, you are unable to create value, then you should probably make some changes.
And it is not just about your work life, either. Try an experiment: the next time you are out in public, start looking for ways to create value, to being a human multiplier of value. In your mind, see it happening. It is surprising how good it feels to have the right and responsibility to be a multiplier.
Don't start by quitting your job. Start by getting clear about your core visions and values. Don't have a vision statement written? Get in touch with me!