Loving Your Job while Living Your Life

Aristotle once said, “Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”

Yet how many of us welcome the day with a feeling of anticipation of the work that is ahead of us? How many of us wake up in the morning and feel in our hearts it’s going to be a good day? How many wake up on a Monday morning, wishing and looking forward to Friday evenings?

I don’t know about you but there are certain days when I do not feel like working at all.

But I have to get up. It’s a job. It gets the kids to school. It pays the monthly bills. It puts food on the table .Yes. More often than not, work to most of us have become more of a survival kit. A boring routine in this cycle called life.

The pace of our lives today, and not least the fact that modern technology means we’re always contactable, can make it very difficult for us to “switch off” from work. Of course we all have times when we’re especially busy, and need to put in extra hours. But, for a healthy work-life balance, that situation needs to be the exception rather than the norm. As propounded by Jenny Ungless (founder and director of City Life Coaching) the following are the warning signs you must identify whether your work is taking over you and you know that you really need to re-evaluate your situation if more than 2 or 3 of the following apply:

  • You are regularly working more than 10 hours a day.
  • Whatever hard you work, you never, ever get to the bottom of your task.
  • You can’t remember the last time you had a really good laugh in the office.
  • You routinely suffer from “Sunday-night blues”.
  • When you get home from work, you feel physically and emotionally drained.
  • You can’t get through the working day without regular fixes of  caffeine/chocolate/nicotine.
  • You take work home with you in the evening or at weekends.
  • You’ve got a reputation among your friends for always cancelling at the last minute.

If these statements describe you and your situation, you’re getting to the point where work is taking over your life. That’s no way to live! Work should be something that adds to, not detracts from, the quality of your life. Your work should interest you, energize you and give you a buzz. But it should also leave you time to enjoy the other aspects of your life, your friends and family, your hobbies and other interests.

“Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work”. Yes, every job in the world has a significant importance.  Every job deserves to be greeted in the morning with positivity and utmost enthusiasm. Each job deserves to be perfectly done.

And to do that, one must find pleasure in what he/she is doing. How? How do we step out from the routine and make our job pleasurable?

I have shared below five ways I found are effective for me.

1.  Find the value in what you do. Acknowledging that you are doing something of value, that you are offering something great to the world gives you a sense of fulfillment.

2. Find the things that you do that do not add value and stop doing them. Sit down and think, of all the work that you are doing, are there processes or tasks that are not value-adding at all? Are there things you do that you don’t really need to do? Scrap these off your task list. Be more efficient and manage your time wisely.

3. Be open to challenges in your career. Make your job more exciting by thinking of new ways how to do things better, challenge the way you do things and do not lose yourself in the daily monotony of your job.

4. Make the place a fun working place. Build personal relationships with the people around you. When the work becomes fun, it does not feel like work at all.

5. Give yourself a break. Either it’s a holiday in the beach, or just sitting down, reading a book from home, it is important to give yourself a break and give yourself time to recharge your batteries. (SOURCE: Ma. Hazel J. Ontong)

Let me end this article with a quote from Dr. Seuss:

“When he worked, he really worked. But when he played, he really PLAYED.” ― Dr. Seuss

Indeed, Life is a balance of things. Work and life should go together and support each other.  Then can it only be pleasurable and perfected.

Our circumstances may be beyond our control. But our reactions to these circumstances are our own. At all times, let us choose to grow. Because in the end, whether it’s work or life, it’s all about attitude.

By: Clementina O. Madronero