We are at the intersection between two aims for life. Two different goals that people build their lives towards. The old way approach to a life’s work and career was optimizing for survival. The new approach is optimizing for meaning (fulfillment, happiness, purpose).
Driving the change is technological advances that make a good life less and less costly. If you aren’t focused on keeping up with the Jones’ you can travel and live well for relatively much less than ever before. At the same time, it dramatically increases your ability to create wealth in a very short period of time with much more freedom.
The old approach was the differed life plan. Make money doing something you may or may not like, save your money in a 401k, and eventually retire. Don’t invest your money in living a good life now, secure yourself for the future.
The new approach is to build a life and career that you never want to retire from. That could mean investing long hours in building a business you love or it could mean learning a valuable skill that you can use to freelance and work on something you care more about in your extra free time.
Old rules optimize for survival. New rules optimize for meaning.
The old way of thinking was terrified of reaching 70 and not being able to afford a condo in Mexico. The new way of thinking is terrified of reaching 70 and feeling that you have wasted your life.