I love writing. I don’t just enjoy it, i really love doing it: i try to carve out any chunk of time i can to sit in front of the keyboard. Or at least, i love certain types of writing! I don’t enjoy forms and processes. So i know what i love and i try to do as much of it as possible.
It’s Valentine’s day today, but i don’t want to talk about who you love, but rather what you love, and whether you spend enough time in love with it.
Life, as they say, is a journey, but the reward doesn’t come at the end. It’s outside the window right now, so you’d better be looking out at it rather than keeping your nose buried in the laptop or the pages of a paper telling you about gossip from the other side of the world. As the boys say in ‘rework‘, you’re creating your life’s work right now, your opus magnum, your legacy and your reputation. So are you doing the right things? Can you even remember what you were doing this time last week?
When you do the same things over and over again, they get easier, we get used to it, but we also tune out. It becomes so easy that it’s almost mindless. We get used to solving problems, we get used to change, the state of frustration or overwork becomes normal, we adapt. But do you love it? And if not, why are you doing it or, more accurately, why not change something?
I know: bills to pay, convenient, easy, whatever! The fact is that if you don’t change what you’re doing, nothing will ever change. That’s fine if you love what you’re doing, but if you don’t, why not think about changing it? You don’t have to change a lot, maybe just look at how to change 1%. What’s that one thing you do everyday that adds no value at all? Why not just stop doing it? What would you rather be doing and why don’t you learn to do that instead?
We are not static creatures: we are infinitely adaptable, but the will precedes the action. You have to be sufficiently determined to make change for change to happen. So what do you love and when did you last do it? Are you a secret painter? A poet? A marathon runner? Would you rather be mentoring a young entrepreneur with the Princes Trust, or would you rather be completing a piece of paperwork that adds no value? It’s your time to spend. Choose where you spend it.
Do you enjoy learning? Because learning is a funny thing: it doesn’t have to be about anything. Unfocused, unrelated, just for the sheer joy of it learning is fine too. There’s nothing wrong with learning to knit if you love knitting. And, of course, there are always unexpected side effects of learning. Sometimes it changes you, in ways you may not expect.
Being with the person you love is special, but being the person who loves what they do is every bit as good. Are you happy how you are, or would you be happier if you changed something? Do you love what you do? If not, today’s the day to make a change.