In the post-modern era, life flits from thing to thing like the butterfly waiting for fall to claim its final days. Maybe they only live for 30 days or even less and they are ablaze with color and purpose. Maybe the fall hints at new purpose or a re-purposing of the old in time and in lock step with the holidays. I think its a known fact that as we age, the holidays become less personal and more vicarious. We look outside ourselves for something that will let us continue believing. Maybe its why a few friends with their own adversity turn to religion. One friend quotes some bible to me every so often I guess in the hope it will offer succor or at least comfort. But we each have to find out way and in our journey we are all unique soldiers and our paths are set apart. What works for Joe may not work for Mike and will not work for Ed. Ed may need new forces to work in his life. Does religion actually provide that? If it does for him, great. For me, I have not found the way to simply give up and let go and let some figure that may or may not care handle things. To me, this God thing is a force of life, a builder of planets, a worker of atoms and molecules and knowledge and technology. He cares at the level that an architect cares about his or her buildings.
Lets get down to what the title is though. Accomplishment. The feeling that one can win against adversity, build a thing using tools which require sacrifice or at least total delivery. To me, that feeling is ever fleeting and often getting done with yet another technology project involving yet another customer that sounds cranky I get only a sense of relief.
Relief and accomplishment and are completely different forces. The first one leaves you in some emotional distress still. You’ve done the things asked but it ends there. Perhaps you don’t feel engaged in the big game or the project or the people or even the process. That’s a game changing problem and it takes away the second.
Accomplishment seems ever fleeting and fleeing. It moves out a step for each one I take. The current work is only an iteration of another piece of work done another time for someone else at another expense. There is no sense of joy at it. No wonder. No derived pleasure. There is only relief. The last time I felt the accomplishment thing was at Microsoft when I finished and raised all the MS Project tasks to 100 percent. I had won against networks, construction, servers, and the myriad other forces which seemed aligned against me. Before that, it was Celestix and their launches of the UAG and TMG appliances on new hardware with teams spread out across three countries in an international setting.
Nowadays, I feel rather deflated in most things and no matter how much I build up the next thing I do, I get the underwhelming feeling I shall not know that elusive feeling of joy of purpose and doing. Perhaps not ever again. Its a sentence of life and its missing purpose for me to not be able to derive accomplishment from work well done. Even in the bible it says,
be known by your works
I cannot. My work does not reflect me and the happiness and joy does not flow. I don’t mean this in a downer way. Its just me and perhaps its the getting older, seeing the fits and starts of technology out there which really has no emotional switch for me. I’ve outlived various and sundry technology companies. Maybe I have outlived the Silicon Valley version of technology as well.
I always feel there is a moment of moving on. Finding a thing which does bring value. Its out there, I feel. A thing which will be opened that is now locked. A new doorway toward a new possibility. Searching forward must be the way. Going backwards is no good.