We wholeheartedly believe in what Confucius said – ‘Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life’. It is so utterly true, but something I would never have believed, as I made career decisions along my journey, until now.
As the brilliant Sir Ken Robinson explains in his book ‘Finding Your Element’, there’s a difference between physical energy and spiritual energy. Not spiritual in the form of religious sense; the sense in which you are high spirits or low spirits. If you do things that you love to do, it actually feeds your energy. At the end of a day, if you’re doing something you love to do, you can be physically worn out, but elated. If you’re doing things that you don’t care for, you may be physically fine, but down and depressed.
If you’re doing something where time shifts — if you’re doing something you love, an hour can feel like five minutes. If you’re doing something you don’t care for, five minutes can feel like an hour. And these different things that feed our energy, are different for all of us. So part of what he’s explaining in the book is to try and track those things.
Finding your ‘element,’ he argues, is a matter of systematically identifying your talents and passions, then seeking or creating opportunities where these two factors overlap. ‘It’s not enough to be good at something to be in your element, says Robinson, ‘because there are plenty of people who are good at things they don’t really care for.’ He cites the example of a talented concert pianist he met who realised mid-career that she was born to be a book editor. One day she closed her piano forever and took a job in publishing. ‘I’ve never been happier in my life’, she told him; ‘never poorer, by the way, but never happier.’ I think we all get this, more than most of the pockets in society. So, if you know someone who’s not drinking out of the same coffee cup, maybe use this day of love, to open their eyes and life.
Happy day of doing what we love everyone!