Finding and doing the work we love

In this article, we’ll discuss how to find and do the work that is more joyful to us.

Why to find the work we love:

When we do the work we love, work is more enjoyable. The best work is possible when we find the joy in doing it. To find the joy in what we do, it’s important to be who we are. That’s when we can be the best at what we do. If someone likes playing a sport and is completely engaged in it, playing that sport does not seem to be the task that needs efforts. Finding the joy is important to succeed in what we do.

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” – Confucius

Why not to be driven by goals:

“When you want to arrive at your goal more than you want to be doing what you’re doing, you become stressed.” – Eckhart Tolle

As Eckhart Tolle suggests, the real joy is being in the present moment. When we’re chasing a goal, we’re waiting for the next moment in that we wish to be happier. That next moment of happiness may be in the next moment. And waiting for the next step may continue. It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t plan. If we love doing something, we live in that moment to do the best work of our lives. Future is built today and in this moment. If we’re driven to achieve the next career position, we’re bound to assess our efforts required to achieve that next position. On the other hand, if we’re inspired with doing our job well, we experience the joy of doing it. For example, I have a friend who is driven from getting a promotion at work. As his next promotion is delayed, he’s upset and feels less valued. He feels that his efforts are not appreciated. And perhaps it may demotivate him to do the best work when his goals and ambitions of getting a promotion are not fulfilled. I’ve another friend who is driven from doing the task for the joy of doing it. She loves mentoring people to perform their jobs to the best they can. She loves taking initiatives. She is not concerned about the next promotion at work. Even when she’s not at work, she loves improving her leadership skills because that’s what she loves to do. She works with the integrity, not because someone is watching her doing the right thing. She does it because doing the leadership work is natural to her. She does it because that’s what she believes she is born to do.

How to find the work we love:

To find out the work we enjoy, find out what we’d do if we’re not paid for it? What is it that’s not the “work” for us? For example, if you like writing, would you still write even if no one reads it, no one appreciates it, and no one pays for it? It may sound very challenging to accept. The deep meaning here is to seek internal happiness in doing the tasks for the joy of doing it. When you do that task, are you in the present moment? Continue searching the natural flow of the tasks you find effortless and natural to you. It may not happen soon. If you already know it, you would know the value of it. If you don’t, it’s a journey to search that natural joyful work for us. For example, someone may like delivering presentations. It may seem easy and natural to this person. The same task could be daunting to another person who feels writing code is natural to him or her. Here are a few steps that may help finding the work you enjoy:

  • Make a journal of your daily activities at work.
  • Is there anything that you wish to do and not getting an opportunity to do it?
  • Is there any task that you enjoy more than other?
  • Would you like to do more of what you enjoy?
  • Would you like to do more what you love even if you’re not paid for it? For example would you like to volunteer doing the task you love?
  • Can you try creating space and opportunities to increase the enjoyable tasks?
  • Step by step, move your career towards the tasks you love.

Next, doing the work we love:

If found what we love, the next step is to detach ourselves from the results of it. Why is it important? When we feel attached to a task that we do well, there is a probability to create ego. It can also create a spiral of actions and reactions. A higher level of consciousness could be to consider ourselves as the actor who’s performing the tasks for the sake of doing it, as if we are born to do it. A flower’s nature is to blossom, without any expectation in the return. In the longer term, such a natural approach helps to stay out of judgement, comparisons, and external motivations. For example, if a Leader loves to inspire others doing the great work, he or she is always finding ways to influence others doing the best work of their lives. No expectation doesn’t mean not demanding the right salary or value of the skills. The meaning here is to excel beyond the monetary benefits, without compromise on demanding the right value.

“Find out what you like doing best, and get someone to pay you for it.” – Katharine Whitehorn

When we love what we do, work is a joy. If we don’t yet know what we truly love, it’s a pleasant journey to search for it. This journey is worth spending time. Take a little step today to know what you love the most out of all the tasks at work. Step by step, find the way to do more of what you love. At the time of retirement, when you look back, you’d love yourself for this journey.

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.” – Steve Jobs

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