Don’t forget: Engineering is supposed to be fun

There are a lot of clock punchers out there who gain zero enjoyment from their work. Do the 8 hours, then get back home to whatever else inspires you. While sad, I can sort of understand. Think of the many potentially unfulfilling jobs out there. I guess you should be positive and say it’s possible to get passionate about any career… but I can see how flipping burgers or washing floors for 20 years could turn into drudgery.

What I can’t understand is how one can feel that way about Engineering. You get to actually make things! New things! Improved things! Things that don’t yet exist!

Way too often, I see 40 year old engineers who’ve been beaten down by policies, politics, and pushing paper. Where’s that brash excitement you felt after college graduation? Come on fellas, you can get it back!

Want to reconnect with your inner inventor? Pick some legacy piece of your product. Look at it with fresh eyes. Draw it up in 3D CAD. Focus on how you might change something to make it better, lighter, or cheaper. Run some simple CFD and FEA simulations to understand what parameters might effect performance. Design something new!

You can set an hour aside two or three times a week to work on this project. Turn off your phone and email. Imagine the fun of your Engineering Design 101 class (back when you had hair).

Who knows… maybe you’ll shave a few ounces of material off that part!
Or, maybe you’ll just reconnect with some long lost passion.
Either way, your 60 hour work week will bring more satisfaction.