Why do you do the work you do?
There are a lot of answers to that question. Your’s might range from “it pays the bills” to “it’s how I change the world.” But if you don’t know why you’re doing what you’re doing, it’s a question worth asking.
Sometimes work is work, you’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do to make ends meet. But even in those situations, there’s a way to find meaning in what you do.
Most people, though, have some choice when it comes to their work. And yet when push comes to shove, a lot of folks can’t really say why they chose their profession. They’re not totally sure what they get from doing what they do… and what they offer up, in the doing.
Let’s talk mission.
I think everyone has some kind of mission in life; something they care about and put their energy toward.
Your mission doesn’t need to look like solving world hunger. It just needs to matter to you. Your mission needs to drive you to get up every day and do something that you feel good about.
Sadly, there are way too many people getting up and going to work every day who don’t feel this way.
I happen to be of the mindset that no matter if you work for someone, are an entrepreneur, or have your own personal empire, you can get up and go to work every day knowing why that job matters to you.
Find your soapbox.
You may have heard the saying, “Find your why.” You know… why are you doing what you do? What’s driving you, especially when you hit the hard times at work?
I think those are good questions, although too often people come back with answers more about what they want to achieve. I’m all for it if you want to retire young or create a lifestyle where you work location free. But I think there’s a deeper spirit to the question that will help you to truly see your purpose… your mission… and if you’re living that in the job you have.
I’m curious about why you care about what you do.
If you had to stand up and tell me why you give a damn about what you do for work, what would you say? Can you find an underlying driving thought behind what you do?
If not, then it might be time to do some soul-searching.
Caring comes in many forms.
Doing work that matters to you, in some form or another, makes a huge difference in how you feel about yourself and how you feel about getting out there and making a living.
And, there can be a lot of different things you can care about with the work you do.
Maybe you love what the company you work for offers the world. Perhaps the product you help create, market or sell helps people in a way that matters to you. It could be more personal; maybe you’re transforming lives and empowering people through what you specifically do.
Somehow, though, you’ve got to find some importance in what you do from 9–5, beyond the paycheck. Otherwise, there will come a time where ambivalence turns inward and you lose your connection to what you feel passionate about.
I see this all the time in my work; people coming for help because they no longer know what would excite them in regards to their work. They’re burnt-out to the point of shut-down, from constantly putting energy out and not receiving back any kind of personal reward.
And that gets me up on my soapbox because I think what you do for work needs to matter to you.