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  • one of the overriding reasons why modern

  • work is so boring is that we keep having

  • to do more or less the same thing every

  • day

  • we have to be specialists whereas we

  • would deepen our hearts surely be so

  • much more fulfilled if we could be

  • wide-ranging endlessly curious

  • generalists you can understand the

  • origins of restlessness when you look at

  • childhood as children we will allow to

  • do so much in a single Saturday morning

  • we might put on an extra jumper and

  • imagine being an arctic explorer then

  • have brief stints as an architect making

  • a Lego house a rock star making up an

  • anthem about corn flakes and an inventor

  • working out how to speed up coloring in

  • by gluing for felt-tip pens together

  • we'd put in a few minutes as a member of

  • an emergency rescue team then we try out

  • being a pilot brilliantly landing a

  • cargo plane on the rug in the corridor

  • we'd perform a life-saving operation on

  • a knitted rabbit and finally we find

  • employment as a sous chef helping make a

  • ham and cheese sandwich for lunch each

  • one of these so-called games might have

  • been the beginning of a career and yet

  • we had to settle on only a single option

  • done repeatedly for over 50 years we are

  • so much more than the world of work ever

  • allows us to be in his song of myself

  • published in eighteen fifty five the

  • American poet Walt Whitman gave our

  • multiplicity memorable expression I am

  • large I contain multitudes by which

  • Whitman meant that there is so many

  • interesting attractive and viable

  • versions of oneself so many good ways

  • one could potentially live and work but

  • very few of these ever get properly

  • played out and become real in the course

  • of the single life we have no wonder if

  • we're often conscious of our unfulfilled

  • destinies and at times recognize with a

  • legitimate sense of agony that we really

  • could well have succeeded at doing

  • something else if not our fault that

  • we've not been able to give our

  • multitudes expression the modern job

  • market gives us no option but to

  • specialize we can't be an airline pilot

  • one afternoon a week at research in two

  • days a month a singer-songwriter in the

  • evenings while holding down part-time

  • work as a political advisor a plumber a

  • dress designer a tennis coach a travel

  • agent and being additionally the owner

  • of a small restaurant

  • lebanese mezack however much this might

  • be the ideal arrangement to do justice

  • to our widespread interests and

  • potential the reason or we cannot do so

  • much were first elaborated at the end of

  • the eighteenth century by the Scottish

  • philosopher adam smith in the wealth of

  • nations Smith explained how what he

  • termed the division of labour massively

  • increases collective productivity in a

  • society where everyone does everything

  • only a small number of shoes houses

  • nails bushels of wheat horse bridles and

  • cartwheels but ever produced and no one

  • is especially good at anything but if

  • people specialize in just one small area

  • making rivets shaping spokes

  • manufacturing rope bricklaying etc they

  • become very much faster and more

  • efficient in their work and collectively

  • the level of production is greatly

  • increased by focusing our efforts we

  • lose out on the enjoyment of

  • multiplicity yet our society becomes

  • overall far wealthier and better

  • supplied with the goods it needs it's a

  • tribute to the world Smith foresaw that

  • we have ended up with job titles like

  • senior packaging and branding designer

  • intake and triage clinician research

  • center manager risk and internal audit

  • controller and transport policy

  • consultant in other words tiny cogs in a

  • giant efficient machine hugely richer

  • but full of private longings to give our

  • multitudinous self-expression one of

  • Adam Smith's most intelligent and

  • penetrating readers with the German

  • economist Karl Marx marks agreed

  • entirely with Smith's analysis

  • specialization had transformed the world

  • and possessed the revolutionary power to

  • enrich individuals and nations but where

  • he differed from Smith was in his

  • assessment of how desirable this

  • development might be we would certainly

  • make ourselves a wealthier by

  • specializing but we would also if he

  • pointed out with passion dull our lives

  • and cauterize our talents in describing

  • his utopian communist Society marks

  • place enormous emphasis on the idea of

  • everyone having many different jobs

  • there were to be no specialists here in

  • a pointed dig at Smith he wrote in

  • communist society nobody has one

  • exclusive

  • of activity but each can become

  • accomplished in any branch he wishes

  • thus it's possible for me to do one

  • thing today and another tomorrow to hunt

  • in the morning to fish in the afternoon

  • to rear cattle in the evening to

  • criticize after dinner without ever

  • becoming a hunter or fisherman a

  • shepherd or a critic it's a beautiful

  • but entirely unrealistic dream we have

  • collectively chosen to make work pay

  • more rather than be more interesting

  • it's a somber thought but a consoling

  • one to our suffering is painful but it

  • has a curious dignity to it because it

  • doesn't uniquely affect us as

  • individuals it applies as much to the

  • CEO as to the intern to the artist as

  • much as to the accountant everyone could

  • have found so many versions of happiness

  • that will elude them in suffering in

  • this way we are participating in the

  • common human lot we can be sure that

  • whatever we do parts of our potential

  • will have to go undeveloped and die

  • without ever having had the chance to

  • come to full maturity for the sake of

  • the real benefits of focus and

  • specialization

  • you

one of the overriding reasons why modern

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Why Is Work so Boring?

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    Agnostic posted on 2021/06/17
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