How to Do What You Love and What's Good For You

Thomas Taylor - Sunday, April 16, 2017
 
There is no end of advice out about how to be more productive, to get more things done in your day. 

But how often do you sit back and have a think about if the things you do are worthwhile for you? Do the short and long term results of the sum of those tasks make you happy? Does it help you grow as a person? Is it what you love? Is it helping the world? 

When you see a talking head on TV arguing bitterly for something that they obviously don't believe is true. I think, is it just a job? Is it just for the money? How did they get to that point? Does it make them happy?

Obviously, that's an extreme example but we have all had jobs we hated, working for people that we didn't like. And we have all had jobs that we weren't very good at, jobs we were just not suited to. As HR people say, there are no bad employees, just bad "fit" for the job. 

At the same time, there are tedious tasks that need to be done in any worthwhile endeavour. Either as an employee or in your own business. Anyone with their own business will tell you that there are just as many unpleasant tasks to do as there were when they were employed. Sales anyone? Come on, it's not that bad :)

So how do you get the balance right?

I've been going through this with a few people lately and what we do, what we all find really helps, is to make a list of your major, high level tasks. usually around 20 or so.

Then put the following columns next to these tasks 

1) Is it valuable to the business

2) Do I enjoy doing It

3) Am I good at it

4) Do I learn / grow from it

Give each one a score out of 3. Where 3 = a lot, 2 = moderate and 1 = not much.

Then add the scores up and see how you feel.  

If you find that you are not growing and enjoying what you're doing it's time for a rethink. Not necessarily chuck everything in and start again but sometimes that might be true. More often it's just about recognising things so that both you and the organisation get the best out of your talents. 

 

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