Career Magazine

Work Hard at the Right Things to Create Happiness

By Rebecca_sands @Rebecca_Sands

Working on what you love on Daily Inspiration Board

I love reading Gretchen Rubin’s (author of The Happiness Project) daily emails. The most recent message was three words to create happiness – “Work worth doing“. I love it – it totally resonated with me and ironically, the heading that you see above was already planned out for today’s topic. It’s funny how the universe presents information that resonates with what we already believe to be true.

So many of us feel overloaded already with the amount of work we have to do, or at least like we already have enough on our plates and taking on anything else seems like madness.

Previously, I always tried to reduce the amount of commitments I had in order to have time to “relax” in the little time I had to myself outside of work. It’s interesting what happens when you give yourself too much time to relax, though - if you don’t use the time wisely, sometimes what can happen is that you whittle the time away with activities that don’t actually satisfy and provide fulfillment. The risk is that you end up wondering what happened to your life and all your talents, creativity and dreams. An activity that’s easy to spend too much time on is TV, for example. There’s nothing wrong with TV – except when that’s all there is to your spare time. Like most things in life, you need balance.

The trick is to work hard at stuff that is going to fulfill you. Not sure what that is? Not many of us do, until we start to try things. The true rewards don’t tend to come though until we really achieve a level of discipline. Most things worthwhile feel like hard work until they’re over, or until you’re completely conditioned to do the task until it is normalised to the point that your mind doesn’t have to make a decision to act on it.

An example of something that felt like hard work in the lead-up was a dinner party for 15 my boyfriend and I held recently for my birthday. It was kind of fun, planning and organising and cooking but it was a lot of hard work. However, I was determined because the rewards were huge for me. The feeling when everyone was around my dinner party enjoying delicious food in my home, talking and laughing and drinking nice wine, was so beautiful. It was more than an experience – it was actually like creating (or reaffirming) all of these connections with these incredible people that I’m lucky to call my friends. So you see, it was totally worth it for me.

That was a one-off event but it’s a similar story with individual pursuits, such as exercise or music or art. It takes work to get good at it, but when you do – when you plug away and keep at it – the benefits are huge.

What do you work hard at that creates happiness for you? Let us know by leaving your comments below! 

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