Day 317: Redefining Work

I watched a School of Ultimate Living hangout on Redefining the word Work and it was very interesting and inspirational. The hangout covered the topic of resisting and disliking work – an experience most of us are probably able to relate to. I suspect that the majority of people desired to do something different than what they are now doing for a living. At least this is the case for me. My line of profession is not anywhere close to what I hoped to achieve and experience as a youth. However, as our world functions currently that is the reality we have to deal with. It is not likely or realistic that I will be able to make a living with music, painting, being a soccer pro or television host. There are few positions like that in our world, and likelihood that I would be able to achieve one of them is rather distant.

Thus, we live in a world that in many ways does not work effectively in terms of enabling us to fulfill our dreams, however, even though we are not able to individually and singlehandedly change how the current system operates, this does not mean that we are not able to change our experience of ourselves within it. The hangout I mentioned above covers the topic of how you are able to change your experience of yourself in work, and find purpose, enjoyment and satisfaction.

Past week I experimented with some of the suggestions that were given in the hangout. Hence, what I have done is that I have brought a percolator from home, some nice coffee beans, and a coffee grinder. Instead of drinking the coffee that the office provides, which does not taste good at all, I have now begun making my own coffee with freshly grounded beans. It takes longer than using the coffee machine, though, that is part of the experience. Making my own coffee like this is a way of slowing down for a moment, taking a breather, and giving myself a treat.

I have more ideas that I am planning to put into creation during the coming weeks. Among other things, I am going to decorate my room with plants, that will help to clean the air, and create a hospitable and inviting environment. I am further going to organize and clean my office, and make it optimal to suit my needs. These are small things, yet, for me to make a big difference. Because, with these small actions I am integrating myself in my environment, taking words such as care, purpose, and fulfillment, and living them practically in my life – creating my life to be MORE through making each day, and within that my work, an extension and expression of myself and not merely something I rush through in a state of dissatisfaction to be over and done with it.

This is not all. In the hangout what was also discussed is how important it is to live HERE, to embrace one’s work HERE, and not see it as merely a stepping stone to get to where we would like to be. It is easy to forget, but life does not exist in dreams about where we hope to go in our future, it is HERE. We might think that our current job offers no stimulation, no challenges, that it is a dead end, and that it will not lead us anywhere – however when we decide to approach our work from that starting point that is also what we create. The solution is to embrace where we are now, and open our eyes to the opportunities that are here. There might be some awesome colleagues that we have not pushed ourselves to get to know, because we have been so stuck in a negative experience towards work. Further, there might be projects, and other types of possibilities at work, that we have disregarded, for the same reason.

At my own office, I have discovered that there is plenty of opportunities to expand, particularly through getting involved in and starting up projects and groups that in different ways improve the working environment. An example would be taking the time to write down and share insights and experiences in relation to various work responsibilities with my colleagues, that will benefit the organization as a whole – and in that giving as I would like to receive. And this opens up another point, that to be able to have purpose and fulfillment in our lives, we must be willing to, and push ourselves to give. Because it is when we give, and we give unconditionally, that we  receive. This brings to memory a famous quote: ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country’ – and that can be changed into: ‘Ask not what your work can do for you, but what you can do for your work.

To summarize, what can be learned and taken from this hangout?

We create our lives, thus, the problem is not our environment, it is WHO WE ARE in relation to our environment. When we decide to become the best we can be to ourselves, and our current reality, then we will also experience a life filled with purpose, fulfillment and satisfaction.


Redefining Work

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