The Grind

When you’re done reading this, how about you try writing your own screed?  You don’t have to jump on a fancy CMS or anything – just whip out a pen and your old-fashioned pad or open up a text editor and bang away.  See if you can get to 300 words or so.  Go ahead – I’ll wait.

photo by Randall Niles on Flickr

Done?  That wasn’t so hard I’ll bet – most of us have a thing or two on our minds or at least can assemble a few cogent thoughts about what we had for breakfast or a work-related project.  Maybe it was even fun.  Now do it again.  And again.

Here’s the thing: doing something once can be fun. Doing it day after day can be crushing, especially if it’s not something you enjoy.  Writing isn’t easy for some people just as public speaking terrifies others (and I’ve even known folks for whom speaking to two other people counts as public speaking!).  I enjoy writing almost as much as I enjoy the interaction and feedback I get from lobbing it out there day after day but I’m not going to lie and say that it’s always easy to crank out the screed (which I consider part of my work).  The fact that I enjoy it makes the grind of doing it bearable.

I suspect that what ever “grind” feelings we might harbor about our daily lives they’re compounded by the almost universal feeling that THERE’S JUST NO TIME.  Work never stops since we’re always plugged in.  Social media is a time suck.  Then there’s the other media – TV, music, reading books (remember those?) .  So how does one deal with it?

  • If you’re not happy with your job, start to think about another one.   I know that’s easier said then done but if you don’t start the journey you’ll never get to the destination.
  • Unplug.  Seriously.  Even for a day.  It’s like a big gulp of oxygen and it will all be there when you get back.
  • Change your perspective.  If you’re reading this on a laptop, flip it upside down.  Completely different experience  right?  Look out a window from which you never look out.  Sit in the back seat of your own car and let someone else drive you.  You never know what silly little perspective change will be a major life adjustment (trust me as a guy who’s had a couple).

If it’s not fun more than once,  stop doing whatever it is before it becomes a grind.  You see, at some point anything we do over and over does become one.  In my mind, what’s getting ground is our spirit and our souls and we need to keep those around.  What do you think?

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Filed under Thinking Aloud, Uncategorized

2 responses to “The Grind

  1. Excellent advice, as usual.

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