I do however receive commentary from others who don’t share my love for work. I think I might have heard the following statement once or twice before, “When you are lying on your death bed you will not be wishing you put in a few more hours at the office”!
Obviously that is a fair statement and if the only thing I had done with my time here on earth was spend a lot of time “at the office” it would be sad. I look at my life a little differently than that. There are reasons that I work hard, and I think many of those reasons could apply to anyone. Here are some of my musings about why I live my life the way I do and I make no apologies for it!
i. Work provides me with the means to do things I could not do without this income;
ii It allows me to provide a nice lifestyle for my family;
iii. Like most people, I get a lot of pleasure from my achievements … so when I do well at work it feels good.
iv. I try to keep my priorities right, I can’t remember missing an important event in my kid’s lives, and by important event I mean I made every game they played in, every recital, every school interview etc. (Sometimes it meant tough travel schedules, but I made it work). I don’t care where I am or what I am doing, if my kids need to talk to me (and they are not kids any longer) they can get me. So I consciously choose to work these hours, this travel schedule, at this intensity level … knowing that if something more important comes along it will get the attention it deserves.
v. My success at work gets me onto boards and committees where I can bring value to charities and to our industry. There is great pleasure in that.
vi. I was not born with money and so I have always had to work … if I have to work anyway why not do a GREAT job at it?
vii. It took me a while to understand, but even before owning a business I never really worked for anyone … I worked for myself. If I did a great job then my employers benefited but at the end of the day it is me and my career that has benefited most.
viii. If I were on my deathbed today I might regret not having completed some things on my bucket list … but I would also be thankful for all the amazing things I have done with my life thus far!
ix. I don’t want an easy life … I want a life with challenges to face, goals to meet, some wins and some losses, but knowing I gave it my best. Work is a big part of that, it stretches me and keeps my mind active, makes me challenge and push myself. I certainly don’t want to see out my days knocking a ball around a golf course (apologies to all my golfer friends … but you know I mean it!)
x. We all have choices and while I make mine, I certainly don’t assume that everyone should be like me. I am however content with who I am … are you content with who you are?
Kevin Dee is CEO of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
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