To really show someone you’ve been paying attention, try bringing up a topic that the person mentioned earlier. Did your co-worker talk about working with his son on a science fair project last week? Follow up and ask how it went. Did your friend say she was going to paint her kitchen a new color over the weekend? Ask how she likes the new color on Monday. They don’t have to be big, life-changing events. In fact, sometimes it says more that you can recall and show interest in even the small happenings in another person’s life.
Kanye West wrote at his classic blog KanyeUniversecity, “So many people talk about their investments or how much money they have but there’s so many rich people who spend a lot of that trying to buy a piece of happiness.” In other words, fulfillment is more important than achievement. Happiness is more important than enviability.
Instead of viewing work as the inevitable grind and hobbies as core to one’s identity, as in the post-war era, today’s professionals strive to equate career with leisure. A Quartz piece published this month calls this new phenomenon “the journey of duality,” as if Gwyneth Paltrow coined a new way to say “working two jobs.” Phyllis Korkki writes, “The secret to a side hustle for the soul is to believe in the power of incrementalism. Know that 20 minutes here and there add up. We can make it a priority to find time to devote to personally meaningful endeavors.”