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Why am I washing dishes while my house is on fire?

Updated: Feb 4, 2020

One topic that is constantly swirling through my mind is my big-picture career choice. There are so many jobs that I have done in the past or could do in the future. Those who are strategic and math-minded like me find themselves in all sorts of professions, and finance just happens to be the puzzle that my brain landed on for now. BUT there are so many things in this world that are more important--more pressing--more vital. I think of it like this: there are dozens of little jobs that are necessary to keep a household running, like cooking, cleaning, laundry, yard work, pest control, repairs, and so much more. But if a fire starts in the house, it doesn’t make sense to be worried about oiling the wood furniture or watering the plants. Everyone in the house, regardless of typical household responsibilities, should immediately rush to help put out the fire or get out. Are there global crises going on right now for which we should abandon every other routine aspect of life? Escalating climate change? Disease? Humanitarian disaster?

And on a more personal note, I often wonder how my normal life can go on when my family is dealing with the death of a dear uncle, watching as a friend battles cancer, grieving with three friends who have recently lost children, etc. In these situations finance can feel totally insignificant. Here’s the problem though. Unless there is a true apocalyptic type situation happening, it wouldn’t work to abandon the more “mundane” jobs in life. Because no matter what sincerely pressing things occur in the world, in the meantime, everyone has to deal with certain things, one of which is money. Even my friend whose body has been ravaged by cancer has often spoken publicly about the difficulties of dealing with finances related to her costly disease. In reality, ignoring money only causes more stress and angst in already devastating situations. The way I bring significance to people’s lives is that when they feel like they understand their finances and feel in control, it reduces stress, removes obstacles, and paves the way for them to be able to deal with the MOST important aspects of life, like their families, relationships, and their own valuable endeavors in this world. I have to believe that in one sense, I am helping to put out the fire.

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