The first part of what I learnt from La La Land can be found here.

If you have watched the movie La La Land, then you must have been familiar with Mia and Sebastian. Mia, being an aspiring actress, and Sebastian, being a jazz musician with no clear prospect, depict common themes happening in our life, especially to those in their quarter-life crisis, aged between 20 and 30.

This second part is dedicated to those of us who might have dreams somewhere in our years of living, but — just as flame flickers and die without being fuelled — have let their dreams burnt into nothingness, or at least into ashes.

But, who might the dreamers be?

  • Ones who know how they measure their life
  • Ones who dare trying and failing

Ones who know how they measure their life?

In his book How Will You Measure Your Life?, Clayton M. Christensen emphasized that when we find ourselves stuck in unhappy careers or unhappy lives — just like the broke Jazz musician Sebastian stuck in his new high-end gig — it is often the result of a fundamental misunderstanding of what really motivates us.

In my post 7 thoughts worthy of being pursued in 2017, one topic that has come by my touched the topic of how creating an eulogy for our future self is a good way to align our resolutions in 2017 to our long-term goals. However, how do we know it — the things that make us tick?

A quick check that we can do: ask ourselves whether we are motivated by external or internal factors. While Jensen and Meckling, with their incentive theory, say that we can pay people to want what we want — over and over again, while Frederick Herzberg, with his two-factor theory, differentiate between hygiene and motivation factors. While Jensen and Meckling’s might work in some settings, true motivations doesn’t necessarily stem out of external motivators — in this case: incentives.

So, do your exercise and know what motivate(s) you.

Without work, all life goes rotten, but when work is soulless, life stifles and dies. — Albert Camus

Ones who dare trying and failing?

And even when the answer’s “no”
Or when my money’s running low
The dusty mic and neon glow
Are all I need…
… Climb these hills
I’m reaching for the heights
And chasing all the lights that shine
And when they let you down
You’ll get up off the ground
’Cause morning rolls around
And it’s another day of sun

— Another Day of Sun, La La Land

How many of us are worthy of this song Another Day of Sun performed in La La Land: of having nothing more than essential pieces needed for living and of getting back up every time we are being turned down?

I am skeptical, but let’s say most of us dares trying and failing. Instead of following the “proven” conventional path of living (study, get an internship, then a steady job and promotions, and so on) with hope that this track is bullet-proof, we realize that success comes at a price, and only for those who dares pursuing their dreams relentlessly.

In the movie, Mia broke her heart many times in numerous unsuccessful auditions — despite those being auditions that are organized by people who pay no respect to talents, just like those organizations where the ill-mannered ass-kissers are promoted over those with genuine interest for the organizations — and almost dismiss her chance to that final audition that propels her to fame.

But, then, how do we know that we should keep on trying or to stop when it hasn’t worked out for quite some time? 2 years ago, I wrote this short post and argue that: (1) we should know how bad we want it, (2) we should reflect, (3) we should ask for genuine feedback.

Maybe, the answer is have a bit of madness!

“The only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”—Steve Jobs

Let’s meet on the comment section below!

photo credits: Dreaming —

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