“As more humans awaken, the word work is going to disappear from our vocabulary, and perhaps a new word will be created to replace it.” ~ Eckhart Tolle, from The Power of Now
When you identify yourself as a human doing, life becomes work.
When you identify yourself as a human being, life becomes play.
For us to feel truly fulfilled in our careers, and life as a whole, we need to express who we are at an authentic level into whatever it is we do.
Society recognizes and rewards performance before well-being – ie, how well or how much one does versus how one feels in whatever it is they are doing. Performance appraisals and our school system are good examples of this. When people strive to perform without any sense of personal fulfillment, without the capacity to express their unique gifts, values, talents and skills, action is empty. It feels more like work and becomes less productive.
What counts is not the number of hours you put in, but how much of yourself you put in the hours.
Work can therefore be defined as doing without being – doing without contributing from a sense of inner-rightness, and feeling the joy and purposefulness that comes from this. Stress, burnout, imbalance, lack of focus and motivation are products of a society driven by work without the well-spring of inner-life flowing through one’s actions.
A great question to ask yourself in any act of initiative is, “Is this who I am?” You will know based on how you feel. If action feels good then chances are it is in alignment with your values and deeper sense of Self. If not, then you may be trying to do something that does not reflect who you are in your truest sense.
“Whenever you say “I should…”, substitute “I don’t want to.” ~ Lynda Austin
Action driven by “should’s”, action without inner consensus and an unequivocal Yes!, is like holding a beach ball under water. It feels inauthentic and therefore like work. When we let go of what we think we “should” be doing and ask ourselves what brings us the most joy, what feels natural and in honour of our intuition, we begin to move in alignment with our core values and what feels true to us. We begin to release the ball that is our authentic Self to naturally flow up to the surface of our life, inspiring creativity and empowerment. Sustainable productivity is born and work turns into play.
“The more I want to get something done, the less I call it work.” ~ Richard Bach
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Remembering to Play ~ Inspiring Joy, Freedom & Self-Care