Olu Eletu

There is a consensus among men to chase money and success over women and love. The reason being is that (gold digging) women usually come with the territory. Successful men typically have more options when it comes to women. Of course, this isn’t always true but I’d like to think so. No woman wants a broke man. Love and broke don’t mix. No man wants to feel inadequate either and no amount of love can fix career complacency. With that being said, let’s dig into a few thoughts.

Would you rather love your career and be single? Or would you rather hate your job to be in love with someone? Neither is secure in my opinion. I think I would have more peace of mind if I love what I do every day. That would allow me to free my heart and my mind to then open up to love someone else. I would much rather worry about being alone than deal with the frustrations of hating my job regularly on a day to day basis. When I’m happy with work, I’m generally happier overall. There’s a certain satisfaction that comes with accomplishing a task that you’re interested in. When searching for love, it helps to have a happy demeanor and not be disgruntled because of work.

The right career can potentially last longer than a mutual love between two people. Careers usually develop over time, based on experience and skill set. Great careers rely on repetition. There’s a theory that says, it takes 10,000 hours to master a complex skill; I say it all depends on the person. When you become a master or expert at something, you can turn your skills into profit — services that people will pay for. You can be one step closer to becoming the entrepreneur you dream of. Therefore, investing time and energy into a career that you love (over love) seems like the favorable thing to do. Many of us are forced to make a decision as to what is more valuable long-term. Which would be more enjoyable? Which has a longer shelf life?

We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s lonely at the top.” I believe this to be true. Success comes at a price. Success has its share of challenges. You must master your emotions in order to have a successful career. While climbing the corporate ladder, you’re not allowed to wear your heart on your sleeve. That’s why many CEOs are labeled as jerks. Think of it this way, be successful, yet feel alone, or, be loved, yet feel unsuccessful. Which one will eat at your soul more? Either way it’s a tragedy. Rarely, and I do mean rarely, are people able to achieve both simultaneously.

You have more control over your career than over someone else. Your career will never turn its back on you, divorce or dissociate itself from you 5 years down the line unless you decide it’s what you want to do. Marry your career first. Women usually do things the other way around. They are more interested in solidifying family partnerships. Most women prioritize getting married and having kids before fully establishing a career. Security is also important.

About 40 to 50 percent of first-time marriages in the United States end in divorce. I’ve read somewhere that that number has lowered in recent years. The divorce rate for subsequent marriages is even higher — somewhere between 60 to 70 percent. Financial woes are one of the main reasons why couples split. And that’s why having a good career is so relevant. Investing time and energy into your career can be more beneficial (and less risky) than betting on love. Love will happen naturally. Your career is something you have to work towards. Would you devote over 10 years of your life to become a medical doctor if there was a 40 to 50 percent chance you couldn’t be a medical doctor afterward? Most would reconsider.

I am under the assumption that love betrayal is the worst betrayal. I am one who has found love and lost love numerous times. I’ve watched love dissipate in the blink of an eye — left only to start from scratch all over again. Through it all, my career has personally remained intact and I enjoy what I do. I’m thankful for it. Ironically, each time I was in love, my career (and several things I enjoy doing) took a backseat. It wasn’t until later on (after separation) was I able to pick up the pieces, refocus my life and continue to advance my career forward in a positive way. Based on my personal experiences, I have learned that love comes and goes while careers stick.

I believe it is wise for any man to choose a career over love if given the option. This is not to say that the latter can’t work; it can with much effort. However, it is difficult and complex because love is blind and has no sense of time. Love is disoriented. People tend to lose themselves while in love. For some, things that once mattered become meaningless. In choosing love first, be conscious of the consuming effects it has, both positive and negative. I believe both men and women ultimately want the same thing — a successful career and love, with a list of other things. Who wouldn’t want that? However, sometimes we are forced to make a critical decision between one and the other. Does it really matter which one comes first? I think it does. What is your take?