When the deepest part of you becomes engaged in what you are doing, when your activities and actions become gratifying and purposeful, when what you do serves both yourself and others, when you do not tire within but seek the sweet satisfaction of your life and your work, you are doing what you were meant to be doing. ―
In 2018, a year after I started NursEd, I stumbled on this quote during a rough time in my career. I was miserable in my job and at home. My fear was that something was wrong with me, until I read this quote.
This quote resonated with my increasing desire to do work that matters to me in a world that teaches us to do what everyone else is doing. It captured how writing and creativity makes me feel, and my need to do work that fits with what I believe and how I want to live my life.
Achieving work-life fit is not about having weekends or evenings off. It’s not about having six weeks of vacation or fitting life into your work schedule. It’s about doing work that doesn’t feel like work; work that feels more like art. It’s about being a part of something bigger than ourselves, while simultaneously practicing our values and staying true to who we are.
This quote teaches us everything that we aren’t taught. Our job isn’t to always do what we’re asked or told to do. Our job is to do the work that needs to get done; work that resonates with us and the people we hope to help.
Another thing this quote says is everything I’ve learned about life. To settle and ignore what’s most important to us is to abandon the very thing that gives our life purpose and meaning.
With the stress and burnout many of us feel, I can’t help but wonder: instead of finding ways for us to like our work, what if we learned how to do work that we love?
Is this possible? I think so.
Where we work, how we work and what we do at work needs to fit with who we are and how we want to live. Period.
I can’t tell you what that looks like for you, but you’ll know it when you feel it.