I am a raving fan of Pam Slim’s Escape from Cubicle Nation blog. Today she published “The Work Manifesto” which I absolutely love. It captures the passion and presence that I believe we each need in our professional lives. Here’s a snippet from the item Work is Your Real Life:
Work is your real life. It is the way you translate your feelings, your thoughts, your hopes and your desires into something valuable, tangible and useful every day. You can choose to make work into a dreaded, necessary evil that you can’t wait to finish so that you can get busy with your “real life.” Why not just do work you love?
While I often make a distinction between work life and personal (“real”) life, I totally agree with Pam that doing work you love is the best way to go. We spend so much of our lives working and earning a living whether we work for someone or are our own boss that we may as well enjoy it. Otherwise, you’re throwing away the better part of your life for some tradeoff of misery. Anyone who has been stuck in a cube and hated it knows what I mean by misery. And, if you are miserable on the job it ripples through and affects your health, well-being, relationships, and ability to enjoy your free time.
I’ll share just one more that I love that that is Owning is Better than Renting.
Owning is better than renting. While you may feel “safer” renting out your skills for a paycheck and benefits, you often sell all your energy this way and have nothing left at the end of the day. If you don’t get what you need in this employment arrangement in terms of money, recognition, power or responsibility, you feel angry and frustrated. Own the means of production and the factory, and at least your glorious disasters will be your disasters. Accountability breeds passion and desire.
Safety is an illusion. Pick up any magazine or talk to anyone you know and you’re sure to find a story about someone who worked many years, long hours, and had great performance reviews who was simply laid off in a blink of an eye. It’s not personal, it’s not “fair”, but it is reality. While a regular paycheck and benefits is certainly more predictable it is by no means safer, not now, and not in the long run. Even if you thrive working for someone else, treat yourself as a CEO of “You, Inc.” and adopt the entrepreneurial mindset.
I encourage you to hop on over and read the rest. With a manifesto item that reads Good work will improve your sex life you can’t afford to miss it.