“How many hours a week do you work?”
I get that question a lot.
Work. Interesting word. What does it mean? Does it have a single meaning?
Maybe it’s like the word “sports.” It means one thing, but there are so many different kinds of sports.
But even with sports, the word itself has a very loose definition that can be left open to interpretation.
Watching the ice dancing on the Olympics the other night, for example, I began debating on whether or not it should even be classified as a sport. Some of these Olympic events like curling are not sports in my world. Curling is life-sized shuffleboard.
George Carlin had the best comedy routine about what is and isn’t a sport.
“Swimming isn’t a sport!” he said. “Swimming is a way to keep from drowning!”
Let’s get back to the word “work.”
I think, as a society, we’ve been raised to think of the word as a negative one. “I can’t play. I have to go to work.”
Our belief is that we have to work to live, and then – if we’re lucky – we get to take a vacation from work. Again, bad thing.
“I need more money, so I have to work a second job.”
The actual definition of the word “work” is:
1- activity in which one exerts strength or faculties in order to perform something.
2- sustained physical or mental effort to overcome obstacles and achieve an object or a result.
3- the labor, task, or duty that is one’s accustomed means of livelihood.
4- a specific task, duty, function, or assignment often being a part or phase of some larger activity.
5- energy expended by natural phenomena.
6- the result of such energy.
So I guess work is kind of like sports!
If I watch Sports Center while walking on a treadmill, did I spend all day at work?
If I lay on the couch and watch documentaries on television – as long as I “exert my faculties” (really think about what I’m seeing) then am I working my ass off all day?
I’m calling BS on all those definitions.
The real definition should be:
Something one does, or someplace one goes, (normally against their will) to perform a task in exchange for money.
It’s the opposite of play.
A lifetime of conditioning has led 99.9% of people to that very definition.
Anthony Robbins says that people do everything for one of two reasons: either to gain pleasure or to avoid pain.
I submit that most people don’t consider “going to work” something they’re doing to “gain pleasure.” It’s normally the latter.
Don’t even get me started on the word “homework.”
Full disclosure – I have always admitted that I am an inherently lazy guy.
My strongest character trait is that I HATE BEING TOLD WHAT TO DO!
Therefore, I absolutely refuse to work. (At least, by the word’s true definition . . . which I just exposed).
I had 22 different jobs from age 17-23, mostly for the reason stated above. I quit most of them, and got fired from the rest (for indifference). But my last job, I kept from age 23-33.
It wasn’t so bad. I think lots of people get stuck in the “my job’s not so bad” rationalization.
Their conditioning tells them that everybody has to work, so if you can find a job that’s not so bad you can convince yourself that you love it. Then the years start to evaporate behind you.
When I was first offered an opportunity to start my own business – and work (uggh) from home – my first though was “why would I want more work?” Why would anyone?
I quickly learned that working in your own business is night-and-day different than working for somebody else. In fact, it’s a different definition completely.
It’s kind of like vacuuming the pool. I really enjoy vacuuming my pool, but I will NEVER vacuum your pool! I like it because it’s mine!
I used to hate mowing the lawn when I was a kid, but as soon as I bought my first house I loved mowing the lawn (that wore off BTW). The difference is that it’s not really work when it’s yours. It’s only work if you’re doing it for somebody else! Hmmm.
I have nothing against “traditional” business and I certainly don’t intend to offend anyone. I’m not one of those whacko’s who denounces jobs and work. I know that there are several great professions, and many many people have become very successful going to work. My litmus self-test, though, would be the following question: Do you have to go to work on Monday? Or do you get to go to work on Monday?
One of the most beautiful things I discovered about network marketing, is that it’s a way to help people out of that box. It gives “get-out-of-the-box thinkers” the ability to keep their full-time jobs – which pay the bills – and work for themselves part-time until the income from their part-time work (which doesn’t feel like work), reaches or surpasses the income from their full-time work. Then your work becomes your play. Kind of like sports!
I better quit before I completely murder this metaphor!
George Carlin says, “Oh, you hate your job? Why didn’t you say so? There’s a support group for that. It’s called EVERYBODY, and they meet at the bar.” Wow, two Carlin quotes in the same blog post.
Oh well, as the Seven Dwarfs sang . . . “Hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to work I go!”
I’m Glad I Drank the Kool-Aid!