Several years ago I emerged from several hours of rather mundane labor, having removed and replaced two toilets in my home.
A neighbor, noticing the movement of boxes, came over to view the results. He was complimentary of the work.
His wife, on the other hand, diminished it. She said, “Well it’s not really anything….. He enjoys doing it….”
She touched upon something important. Unfortunately, since she did not frame her observation in terms of a question, the underlying issue didn’t remain alive through the oxygen of discussion.
In fact, she was only partly right.
She regarded my cast of mind as an accident. In fact it was the result of decisions I was determined to make and carry through. The rather unremarkable work at hand was just an occasion to apply my chosen thought process.
Can You Find Fun… In What Must Be Done?
Is there wisdom in searching for ways to create personal interest–even finding enjoyment–in tasks one should undertake?
Perhaps there can be. If you can make running and exercising compelling, in whatever ways work for you, you’re likely to earn better health. So, too, with dieting. So too with work of all types.
It’s said that an artist can find fuel for her expression amid all aspects of living; the world becomes her workshop.
If you’re striving to create a masterpiece of service, transforming your work and life into art, isn’t there value in finding interest and joy in the quotidian tasks that no one can entirely avoid?
Conversely, is there any redeeming virtue in soldiering along, manifestly struggling with boredom or detachment or ennui in tackling tasks that you’ve determined have value in some way?
To create joy amid necessity, to find happiness in doing things that are good for oneself and others, there lies a path of wisdom.
Some People Make Everything Fun
When there is a task to be done that one may not enjoy or relish, there is often someone involved who makes it fun.
Some people determine to cultivate a talent for happiness in this way. They can make almost any task seem fun, even joyous. The difference is not so much in the objective reality, it’s in how one decides to process that reality, to respond to it.
Are you a person who can transform otherwise unappealing tasks into something fun? Are you attracted to others who assume such roles?
Just One Thing
This week, take a new look at various tasks of your work and life. For those that you find boring or off-putting, can you frame your thinking in new ways? Can you find ways to make them interesting–or even fulfilling?
Can you find fun…in what must be done?
You might find that there is joy and happiness in your midst, simply waiting for you to harvest it.
Your example may also be of service to others–even beyond those you’re aware of–who are struggling with their own, corresponding challenges.
This Week: Create Joy Amid Necessity.
Just One Thing is a weekly challenge, adapted from Serve to Lead.