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creativity

Wonder: Fill your time with work that feels like play

“A master in the art of living draws no sharp distinction between work and play.” ~L.P. Jacks

There are so many reasons that I’m excited for my new job that starts a week from today. There’s the one phrase about the respectful and professional culture in the job description that told me this is the place for me: “This is a very egalitarian operational environment…everyone has a say.” There’s the great opportunity ahead to build products based in AI, AR, and VR technology that will help people live healthier, happier lives. There is the sense of starting from a blank canvas that will rapidly be filled in to develop a prototype product in a quick handful of months. There’s the small, experienced team that will work closely together around a single table for a single goal.

And still, above all of that, what has me most excited about this opportunity is the quote above by L.P. Jacks. The roles and companies I have most loved in my career are those that didn’t feel like work at all because what I was doing was so interesting that is took my curiosity and sense of wonder to a level that felt like play. I didn’t mind the long hours, I barely noticed the time flying by, because the work itself was so satisfying that it gave me energy rather than draining it. And I am so ready to return to that kind of work.

When people ask me what I want my career and my life to be, I have to turn to L.P. Jacks and say, “Thank you for putting my whole purpose into 15 words.”  

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About Christa Avampato

I make a living in business and I make a life as a writer, artist, and yogi. I use my business and storytelling skills to build a better world. My first novel, Emerson Page and Where the Light Enters, will be published in the Fall of 2017 by Thumbkin Prints, a children's and YA imprint of Possibilities Publishing Co. My creative career has stretched across Capitol Hill, Broadway theatre, education, nonprofit fundraising, health and wellness, and Fortune 500 companies in retail, media, and financial services. In every experience, I have used my sense of and respect for elegant design to develop meaningful products, services, program, and events to help people live happier, healthier lives. A recovering multi-tasker, I am a proud alum of UPenn (BA) and the Darden School at UVA (MBA). When not in front of my Mac, I’m on my yoga mat, walking my rescue dog, Phineas, traveling with a purpose, or practicing the high-art of people watching. I am proud to New York City my home, and I've been called the happiest New Yorker by friends and strangers alike. They're right. Follow my adventures on Twitter at https://twitter.com/christanyc and Instagram at https://instagram.com/christarosenyc.

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This week, the many different threads at my job started to connect. It’s immensely gratifying to learn a large and complex technology platform, all for the sake of bringing more art, theater, music, and dance to more people. The vertical learning curve is becoming a little less vertical. Or maybe I am just becoming a more adept climber.

This idea of scaling walls reminded me of this sign I saw a few months ago when I was shoulder-deep in my job search, including interviewing for my current job. I wasn’t sure what would happen in my search, or what I would do about what would happen when it did happen. (This is how my mind works. It’s in a constant state of whirring.) What I needed was a sign, so I asked for one as I made my way up Fifth Avenue from the New York Public Library to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. That’s when I saw this sign in the North Face storefront: Walls are meant for climbing. And about 30 minutes later, I heard from my now current job that I was moving on to the next and final round. Less than a week later, they offered me the job.

It’s this sense of optimism, asking the Universe for guidance, and then opening our eyes and ears to take in the wisdom around us that we have to take with us everywhere we go, into every situation that we face. We may not always be successful though our odds dramatically increase when we can look at a wall not as a roadblock, but as a reason to smile. I got this. You got this. We all got this.

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