Anything Worth Doing…
Anything worth doing is worth doing right – I'm on board with that.
Ever since I was a kid apprentice and heard it first from one of the older blokes still on the tools, it has stuck with me.
I reckon I have a good work ethic and so it resonated with what I already felt I suppose.
I enjoyed the work as it allowed me to think, to figure things out.
It had a process that I enjoyed working through and so I gradually became better at it. I did that work for almost 30 years, every day getting a little bit better.
Did I love it?
I wouldn't say I loved it – I enjoyed it. It taught me lots and it gave me an income so I'm grateful for that.
If anything I stuck at it a little longer that I should have done, but there was value even in that. There's value in every experience.
However, it's my belief that if we find we are doing things that we don't enjoy, then we should stop and do something else.
Those things in the category of “anything worth doing” are things we get joy from. If they don't serve us any longer then we should get out and do other things.
A Lesson In Doing From A 10-Year-Old
I was at home on Saturday with the family. We were all together in the kitchen, me, my wife and three kids.
The boys were getting ready for their cousin’s 9th birthday party and my missus was shaping up for one of those 3-hour hair appointments that I will neither ever require or understand.
She was running late and needed to leave pronto.
My eldest son Ruairí was drawing his cousin’s name on the birthday card envelope and was offering his usual undivided attention to detail to the task.
He loves to draw and to read and when he's in that mode there's just no getting his attention.
Even though it can at times be frustrating trying to get him to do other things like clean his room or other chores, I love that he can shut out the world.
His appetite for reading is insatiable.
800 page Harry Potter books are devoured in a week. The entire works of Roald Dahl have been consumed twice over and we’re struggling to keep him in reading material.
He’s a bright kid and I love that he’s into these things.
Anyway… enough about my kid.
He’s beavering away at the design on the front of the card and his mother says;
Ruairí you’re wasting your time. The envelope is just going to end up in the bin. Just write his name on the card and let’s go.
His response was awesome and something I wasn’t expecting. Afterwards, he told me he just made it up on the spot. Maybe he did, maybe he didn’t but it meant a lot to me.
Head down, eyes to the task of the design he said;
Mam, it’s like making a cake, you want it to look good even though you’re going to eat it.
What You Missed This Week
This week I have been focusing my time on Storymaker, the new publication on Medium.
I've been writing here because it was easier and quicker to get a new post out while I was gainfully employed. Time was at a premium.
On Friday I finished up in that project management role and so now begins a new chapter as a full-time freelance writer.
I walked out of there as light as a feather. Feels good to be flying solo again. As I said before, I can follow other people's rules for a while but eventually, I have to follow my own.
I'll publish a post on that tomorrow so keep your eyeballs on the blog.
In the meantime here's what I was writing on this week;
Monday – The Art Of Patience
Tuesday – The Compelling Urge To Write
Wednesday – Guts Over Fear
Thursday – Buying The Experience: What Makes People Buy Stuff
Friday – What Makes Good Coffee Good
Saturday – Why Does Lindsey Buckingham Play?
Sunday – You're reading it.
That's it for now folks, enjoy the rest of your weekend and I'll see you tomorrow
Ryan Carty says
Great post as usual.
Sometime back, my son was doing some work for a neighbor. This neighbor happens to be a physician, and pays the boys very well. The work was hard, and my kid came home tired and dirty, but very pleased not only with the pay he received, but with the labor he’d completed as well.
A few weeks later, he went to help another neighbor with similar work, but was not paid quite as well for the work. Rather than complain, he worked equally hard and gave his best effort. He did say he wished he’d been paid better, but also stated he knew that he’d agreed to do the job and he wasn’t going to give anything less than his whole effort.
I was proud of him. Also, I can’t wait until he finds something he is passionate about, because if he can put that sort of effort into work he doesn’t necessarily enjoy…
Awesome, good for him. Although having the experience of being short changed can be difficult, it can teach us valuable lessons. Smile and move on, that’s the best route. Thanks again for reading Ryan!
Sam Cole says
Way to go dad for listening and savoring and passing on your son’s comment.
Aside from your family’s (wonderful) rushing around, I just hope you’re finding time to, privately, attentively kiss, hug and tell your kids – no matter what – that you love them. It’s important. NOW. Tomorrow could be your last day with them. ‘jes sayin’.
We lost our son, our only child, when he was 16, in a freak accident. He was a joy of a kid, a budding scholar, and finding his way in the world, and choosing good kids to hang with. Two weeks before the tragedy I had flown back from a UK business trip. I dropped my luggage, kissed and hugged my wife and sought out my son who was doing his homework at the computer. I gently hugged and kissed him and said, “I love you Charles.” He replied back, “Love you too, dad.” I am so friggin’ glad/thankful I let my heart do the talkin’.
Two weeks later he was dead.
Don’t screw around. KISS ’em! NOW!
All the best, Larry.
Hi Sam, I’m truly sorry for your loss. I can only imagine the pain and difficulty you must have experienced, and still do no doubt. My parents lost their first child, Laura in 1977 when she was 7 years old. Although I was young I saw the difficulties and challenges losing a child presents for many years afterwards. It’s something now as a parent I don’t ponder, however, that experience as a kid has helped me form a perspective I wouldn’t otherwise have. I don’t always get it right but knowing none of us are here forever helps me make better choices I think.
Thanks for sharing your story Sam,
Regards for now, Larry