“What work I have done I have done because it has been play. If it had been work I shouldn’t have done it. Who was it who said, “Blessed is the man who has found his work”? Whoever it was he had the right idea in his mind. Mark you, he says his work–not somebody else’s work. The work that is really a man’s own work is play and not work at all. Cursed is the man who has found some other man’s work and cannot lose it. When we talk about the great workers of the world we really mean the great players of the world. The fellows who groan and sweat under the weary load of toil that they bear never can hope to do anything great. How can they when their souls are in a ferment of revolt against the employment of their hands and brains? The product of slavery, intellectual or physical, can never be great.”-Mark Twain
When I read this, I thought -wow, I could have written this myself :). It is certainly true that when someone finds his work, he needs not work a day of his life anymore, for your work is one that will flow naturally with you. Your work, is one for which you have special skills, passion and talent. The great workers of the world are really the great players of the world.
I don’t know if you have ever wondered how come you earn what you earn, and another guy in your company earns so much. If you’ve tried to think about it, you might have come up with reasons like salary surveys and what the community pays for your type of role versus their type of role, you might also have thought about the quality of value you are adding versus this other person. If you have wondered, wonder no more. Your salary is a measure of the societies estimation of the value you add. Let me try and break that down a bit.
If you are a messenger, society values that at about N7,500 per month. There are many people that can offer that role, supply is more than demand, the price crashes to minimum wage. If you are a technical telecommunications staff, the society probably values that much higher (N200,000 per month)- you can apply supply and demand there as well. Before you think that society is very logical, let me position this for you. Assuming you were a footballer – a Kanu Nwankwo, or a Jay Jay Okocha – the society presently values your service much more than that of the MD of a telecommunications company. What matters for reward is not the type or quality of work, it’s the social value of it. Interestingly the social value of work that is play or fun is much higher than what you consider work.
So, do you find your work enjoyable? That ought to be your goal. To have and do work you enjoy doing. To find work that makes you wake up excited every morning. To engage in activities that fill you with passion and zest. Just watch an Okocha, a Thiery, a Michael Jordan or even a Larry or Serge of Google. The most highly rewarded for their work are those who have found that which they truely enjoy.
Are you working or are you slaving it out? You don’t need to leave where you are before you start working (if you need to, by all means do), you can look within and begin to engage in activities that you truely enjoy. Begin to add the value that you were configured to add. Success is not in the profession, it’s in the excellence with which the value is added. Look around you, start writing for your company magazine, start performing in your end-of-year party, start joining event planning meetings in your organization, look for areas of talent and passion and volounteer.
The man that has found another man’s work and cannot loose it is cursed. You can’t become great at what is not congruent with your natural abilities and passion. Every extra day is wasted. Start plotting your route today!
New Segement – Emotional Recharge