There is a top rated restaurant near where I live (well…in boulder…). Because the restaurant is so well regarded, one would assume that it is a money maker. What I think I know about the restaurant, is that the money maker is a lesser version of the restaurant focused on wood fired pizzas, and a coffeeshop – both on the same block or general area of the restaurant. The woodfired pizza version expanded to a few more locations. Coffee beans and flour/yeast/water are easier to scale than the expensive ingredients, wine, lengthy meal time and service at the premier restaurant. The beans and flour cost less, and receive much more ‘value’. The fine dining is thoughtful and flawless, quality and service are integrated into the dining experience. 

Dining ‘experience’.  

At times, I wonder why the teaching profession is not a valued profession as evidenced by salary (considered nationwide). One thing I learned about money makers and why someone with less education, experience, and personal investment in outcome would receive multiple ‘value’ (ex. expected teacher salary $60,000 and expected corporate salary $120,000) in a corporate setting is because the corporation has scale which means it receives multiple ‘value’. 

Am I making sense?

This is not a well researched analogy, it’s more an observation. I started thinking about the same scenario I just shared when my brother worked in a management role within a corporation. I recall him having a team and being responsible to hire team members. The expected salary for the position he hired for was a base of $120,000. There were incentives and other ways to exceed the base, but once hired the contracted salary was $120,000. It’s just the way it was. My brother would talk about some hirers as if he was talking about a 16 year old with an undeveloped work ethic at a fast food restaurant. I’m exaggerating a bit, but it was so surprising to me how in some areas of employment/industry, the base rate is widely accepted to be ‘just the way it is’. One only had to get into the industry (in this case it was sales) and then with some experience one could anticipate a certain base salary – no matter what your work ethic or personal sense of investment as to how you spend the day at ‘work’. 

It makes sense to me as a human who observes the world around her that many people receive high ‘value’ for how they spend their day. How else could populations of people afford what they afford (?) 

In this case, ‘value’ feeds ‘value’. The ‘value’ one receives from the corporate job transfers to the other industries: hotels, restaurants, clothes, shoes, grocery, cars, vacations, travel, – exhaustive list, right?

Value for value. 

What is value? If money is value, is the ‘value’ of one’s salary reflective of ‘values’?

What are values?

Let’s replace the external condition (observable and measurable) of value (salary, money) with the internal condition of wellbeing. What is the exchange rate of wellbeing?

Is one’s internal value being robbed by a misinformed external definition of value?

Is the internal at odds with the external? 

Is the story one tells a version of ‘it’s just the way it is?’

Is the wellbeing ‘industry’ creating value at scale by suggesting that wellbeing is something that can be purchased?

Something is skewed here. 

I suppose the question to ask is: what do you value?

One way of being curious about what one values is to consider what gets your attention – what do you find yourself pushing against? what do you find yourself being pulled toward?

If you push against change, you may value consistency or expected outcomes. 

Next, one can ask themselves, why? Why is consistency important to me? At what ‘cost’ is this ‘value’? Why are expected outcomes important to me? At what ‘cost’ is this ‘value”?

The ‘why’ is the nugget. The ‘why’ is the story you tell. Is the story unexamined(?): ‘it’s just the way it is.’ 

Does your ‘why’ resonate with a deeper sense of connection to the somethingmore? Or does it resonate with…ready? ‘It’s just the way it is.’

Is the story you tell about ‘value’ contributing to your wellbeing? 

Is that which is observable and measurable (external) at odds with what is internal?

“Does your day reflect the fine dining at a smaller scale? What value do you place on ‘day’?”

, she asks herself as she posts the blog and wonders ‘why ‘.