Book Review: ‘Quitter’ by John Acuff
My new favorite nonfiction book is called Quitter by John Acuff. Here’s from the back cover:
“Have you ever felt caught between the tension of a day job and a dream job? That gap between what you have to do and what you’d love to do?
At first I thought I was the only one who felt that way, but then I started to talk to people and realized we’re becoming the I’m, but generation. When we talk about what we do for a living we inevitably say, I’m a teacher, but I want to be an artist. I’m a CPA, but I’d love to start my own business.
I’m a _____, but I want to be a ______.
All too often, we hear that dreaming big means you quit your day job, sell everything you own, and move to Guam. But what if there were a different way?”
His opening line ironically was, “Don’t quit your day job.”
Instead of chasing our dreams without a plan, he encourages us to tackle our day job with a better attitude. Learn, he says, to live with comfortable discontent and use cubicle time to fund what we’re most passionate about. In other words, learn to live where you are. Work diligently and disciplined. Success and peace will follow.
Breaking away from chronic quitting
Acuff was a chronic quitter, averaging about a year per job, following his passion of writing and speaking. He was finding an audience as a blogger, a book deal was imminent, and he was discovering moderate success.
Still, he didn’t quit. Day-job contentment followed when he didn’t have to choose just any speaking or writing gig. After all, he wasn’t using this side gig to pay Joe Plummer or the mortgage company. He spoke at conferences and gatherings for free, but he could do that only because he wasn’t worried about paying the bills.
Acuff defamiliarized the “chase your dreams” approach and genre.
Learn more about John Acuff, his blog and his book. Visit johnacuff.com
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