Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Am I lazy


Most people qualify if they are lazy by comparing themselves to others.  But, if the majority of your friends and colleagues are not setting goals or accomplishing much in life, chances are, neither are you.

I feel lazy a lot at home when I compare myself to my partner.  But people at work have told me I am ambitious, and a "self starter."  A self-starter is the opposite of a lazy person.  This type of person looks for work to do or ways to contribute without being told what specifically needs to be done.  But just like there is a spectrum of work tasks to complete, there is also a range in level of effort that you can apply.

These days, its easy to fill your day with busy work, and not really accomplish much in the way of tangible work products.  The back-to-back work meetings I am in often only produce status updates or discussions, not documented reports or proposals.  I see this in home life too, where some weekends I spend hours and hours running errands or planning projects, when the real work that is needed is to pull the weeds.  So, if you spend all your time "working" but not completing meaningful work, then eventually you feel unproductive and lazy.  

So why are Americans so stressed all the time, and need a better work-life-balance?  I think the stress comes doesn't come from being too busy or a lack of time, but rather from being busy all day not accomplishing meaningful work.  Setting and achieving SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely) goals is the best way to not feel lazy.  As you work towards a meaningful goal, you can record and see your accomplishments.  When you achieve your goal, you have something that you can point to and be proud of.  Something that added value or meaning from where you were when you started.  

So, why do people fill their day with busy work at the expense of SMART goals?  Because they are avoiding doing real work because its hard.  Its a form of laziness.  Pulling weeds is harder than driving my car to the grocery and shopping.  Ok, shopping is important too, but if you are always deferring the hard tasks with the easier ones, you are lazy.  This is an easy pattern to get into if you never set any goals for yourself.  If you never set any goals, you never fail.  You can plug along for years maintaining what you have today, and before you know it, "life has passed you by." 

Don't let life pass you by, its too short.  Live every day with a purpose if you can. Surround yourself with people who are ambitious and goal-oriented, and you will by association achieve more yourself.

What are some examples of meaningful work in your life?  What goals have you achieved that you are most proud of?  We'd love to here your response in the comments below.

Daily Writing Response 7/300


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