Forgive me..this is going to be a long post..
The other day I read this amazing article by Tynan at (http://tynan.com/lovework ) where he talked about his decision to become a hard worker.
The article as a whole is amazing, but there were several pieces that immediately connected with me and made me realize there were some valuable lessons that I would immediately need to apply to my life in order to see the results that I’ve been frustrated about not seeing.
The first is his DECISION to become a hard worker. This struck me. Oftentimes I’ve worked hard but these time periods seem to always be driven by either emotion, a perceived need, or a goal that I was striving toward. I’m not sure that there is anyone who would characterize me as not a hard worker but I’ve always felt that I am capable of much more than what I’ve produced.
The fact is that if instead of being driven by whims or temporary goals and instead focused 100% on making sure that I was always working hard and working intentionally on the things that are REALLY important to me, I would probably be much further along than I am.
This realization, along with the fact that I am getting more and more clear on the role of money in my life, is combining to help me get very clear on my intentions for 2018. I’m realizing that for me – just buying more stuff doesn’t really hold much appeal. For me, the utility of money is found when it can be applied to one of two goals: 1. Becoming more [debt] free (financially) or 2. Becoming more me (via experiences, expression, or exploration).
Ok..so those things: Working Harder – and not letting emotions dictate the pace of my work. Being very clear about what I’m using my money for and using the filter’s of either improving myself or becoming more free (helping my future self) are already making me feel better about next year. Mostly because I’m realizing that those things are well within my locus of control. I CAN make 2018 better.
One of the things that I’ve already noticed that in order to be able to work harder I’ve had to re-frame my relationship with my work and really attach meaning to day-to-day activities. This has been HUGE. I’m noticing that by attaching meaning to even the menial activities – “by doing X, patient’s will be healthier, or have faster access to medications” – I leave work each day hoping to have done my best because it’s not just about me or my little goals, it becomes about something truly meaningful.
One of my favorite quotes from the Tynan article:
Work is your gift to the world. That sounds corny, but it’s true. And believe me, you owe the world a gift or two. Think of all of the various things that millions of people around the world have done for you to enjoy the life you have. They made up languages, invented stuff, procreated at the exact right times to create your ancestry, and managed to not kill each other in the process. We’re lucky to be here, and the high standard of living we all enjoy now is only because of those who came before us. Some, like Einstein, had huge impact, but even people you don’t notice, like the janitors, are making your life better.
One of the other things that I’ve been pondering is the language I’ve been using to think about 2017 has been very judgment based.
Mainly because there were goals that I wanted to hit but that did not happen..partly because of things outside of my control (like the local real estate market). I completed 6 out of 8 goals for the year. Which isn’t terrible, although obviously isn’t quite what I was hoping for.
This quote by Tynan struck me pretty hard:
Your mind must accept a very absolute truth: if you work extremely hard, you’ll probably get most of what you want, but if you work an average amount or less, you will not get what you want.
I know the level of focus that I put into goals when I’ve seen them be successful. I only put that level of focus and Hard work into 1 goal this year. That goal was a great success. I realize here at the end of the year that I have to just as focused and unyielding in my pursuit of my goals in every area.
Also as I’m getting older, I’m realizing I have less and less time for hoping that things will “just” happen ..if I want to be married I need to be focused and persistent in dating – not letting the emotions around the process distract me from pursuing the outcome that I want.
…So before publishing this article, I took a moment to read through some of my posts. And I’m not going to lie, many of my past posts almost mirror the sentiments in this post. It’s almost funny if it wasn’t also frustrating.
Judging from posts that seem to be almost 2 years old, I’ve been stuck in a bit of a holding pattern. It seems like my number one strategy for escaping this holding pattern has been to work harder. Every year, just working harder and harder.
This year I’ve probably outworked myself in comparison with previous years and have made some impressive strides, but I am still right in the midst of some of the very same struggles I faced at 31.
I’m wondering how I beat this stage of Life’s video game?
If my current strategy of working harder isn’t working, how do I approach the problems differently?
sigh. Much thinking ahead.
Fly or Fall.