How many times have you heard someone say, "if you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life"? How great does that sound? Never having to work again - sounds fantastic to me! Inherent in its definition, work is exhausting, tiresome, and something to be completed (and then be done with). Whether that work is managing a project, taking care of employee relations issues, doing the dishes, putting together a report, etc...
But how many people do you know that live in this state of bliss... Loving all of what they do so that they aren't actually working? None? Yeah, me too... I have heard of them (Steve Jobs I am thinking of you here), but never actually met one.
Well, that is a bit disappointing. Now what? Never strive for this bliss? Nahhh... I am too much of a glass half full sort of a person to accept that either.
There is a wealth of data out there about happy employees being more productive. What that exact productivity increase is depends on the study... 12%, 13%, ...17%. Here is what I do know: happier (or more engaged employees) are more productive. This begs a question though:
Does happiness need to come from the organization?
For years I have, and continue, to work with organizations to do this better: to better engage their employees. I also think that you, me, and every person has a responsibility to find and generate some of their own happiness. But what does that look like?
For me, the warmth of a cup of good coffee brings a smile to my face every morning. So does puppy kisses. So does a walk outside. So does carving out some time to do the Wordle in the morning. Taking a few minutes everyday just for me, doing something that I love brings me some joy and happiness. When I make time for me at the start of the day (ok, maybe not the start, but early), that has a significant impact on the rest of the day.
What brings you joy?
As you look as your work ahead, how can you carve out a few minutes at, or near, the beginning of the day to do one thing just for you. Not for your kids, not for your partner, not for your boss... just for YOU!
What is it that brings you joy?