Over the weekend I found myself thinking about my violin career and well, frankly, how limited the opportunities are, at least those on the professional orchestra level. There are only so many orchestras in the country, which only need so many violinists, and there are armies and armies of violinists ready to audition at every opening.
And of course, I know this applies to a lot of other jobs and situations as well, not just for violinists. Hard work and perseverance are very important, but so is the timing of when things happen. And the truth is, some people are simply around at the right place at the right time, and some aren’t. (Not to say that those who were didn’t work hard also to get where they are – they did, but they had the extra factor of “luck,” which deserves more credit that we often give it, I think.)
But thankfully, there are some things that don’t require good timing and fighting for limited slots, though they still do require hard work and perseverance. These are things like making other people happy, learning to be respectful, being grateful, and guarding our tongues by learning the laws of shmiras halashon. Things like being a good listener, and being a person of integrity, and being trustworthy. Things that aren’t tied down to this limited world, and therefore, whose effects won’t be limited either.
There isn’t only a number of people who can spread cheer in the world. There isn’t only a specific number of people who are allowed into the “kindness club.” While these jobs aren’t the typical ones found in job listings, there is a dire need of them every single day, and the more people who decide to take these jobs up, the better. While they may not directly affect your parnassah, the “currency” in which you will be “paid” will be much higher in value anyway – and well, these traits could indirectly affect your parnassah in this world at some point too, who knows?
So which job will you apply for today – showing kindness, making someone happy, or something else you have in mind? No previous experience necessary, no necessary educational attainment, though learning on the job is encouraged. Applicants are encouraged to start as soon as possible with whatever they are comfortable with, then building up from there. There is no set schedule for receiving your “paycheck” but every time you do, whether you notice it or not, it will be better than you could have imagined. Unlimited slots open, so tell your friends.
Bernice is a Noahide from the Philippines who spends most of her time playing violin, being involved in musicology research, and writing about various topics (her favorite being Judaism). The rest of the time, she can be found drinking coffee, reading, and convincing herself to workout.