What do you consider to be a healthy work ethic?   

What do you do to thrive without becoming neurotic about it? How do you stay calm and content in challenging, demanding times and environments? In this episode I’ll talk about the most insane principle that may cause stress, lead you to feel depressed, anxious or obsessed. Let me know about your thoughts or questions after watching. I’d love to hear them.

Transcript

The last few months I’ve been having these great conversations with some of the high performers I know and there’s this thing I noticed that I want to share with you that might help you transcend in whatever you’re working towards to. It’s about healthy work ethics. 

Beyond a healthy work ethic of a high performer lies the idea (this principle) that you’re never supposed to settle, that you shouldn’t become comfortable but always strive for better…. that you should always strive for more until you finally reach that goal and get to be that person or achieve that thing you aim for. Some people call this hard work because they keep themselves busy all the time grinding to achieve their goals. Now, I’m not saying that we should become lazy, indifferent or dispassionate but I think there’s a difference between care and conscientiousness in one’s work and obsessive behavior. 

As a matter fact, I think this way of living only works at a certain stage in people’s lives where they’re probably less spiritual than they could be. Because, when you become spiritual (or if you are spiritual), you don’t want or need to reach this ever increasing level of unsatisfactoriness. It’s actually an insane idea that causes stress. An insane principle that may lead you to feel depressed, anxious or obsessed. 

You might think that I’m taking this too far but some people become very neurotic about it. We tend to think that this way of living and working equals a healthy work ethic, but as these high performers are saying: no one has ever struck gold with excessive hard work. No one really needs that on a life’s journey, unless it’s a lesson that needs to be learned. 

From my own experience, and as many of these high performers have been saying, instead of following this principle, they rather grow comfortable with their personal neurosis to achieve what is necessary and live a meaningful happy life. Instead of trying hard to become, they live as though they are. They don’t work hard to hopefully achieve or turn into whatever they have in mind but they accept where they are now and begin to be.

Now this should help you go beyond your typical work ethic. As we live our lives we tend to be in a state of becoming instead of being. Most of us are constantly looking to achieve status and/or to possess more. There’s a sense of wanting to become something… to become someone…and it’s quite rare that when we reach that thing we aimed for that we experience a good quality of happiness or satisfaction. 

And, here’s the thing…most of us…when we get there… we might think: yeah, we’re here…, I finely got that job/position, I’m finally making that money, so now things are finely going to settle, now that quality of life is attainable, our relationship has finally reached that level, now I can finally have a bit of peace. 

Now, I hope this computes…Achieving goals is fine, working to have more money is great but the interesting issue here is that you’re always on the move and never arriving. In a sense, you’re always becoming and never being.  You’re always moving towards some future projection but rarely arrive or let alone be present.

Of course, most us have to work for a living. Yes, we do have to exert ourselves mentally or physically in return for some kind of a reward. The difference here with these spiritual high performers’ work ethic is that they stopped grinding and started qualifying their presence in the here and now. Not because they don’t need or want the rewards anymore but because they’ve consciously chosen to let the pressure go. Spiritual high performers don’t necessarily get rid of their neurosis but they find stability by being and living in what is. They are present and at ease within the realm they’re in. They plan ahead but they are comfortable with what is at hand. Not only do they work hard and find reward in their effort, skill and courage but in this (effort, skill and courage) they find joy and fulfillment. They are determined (committed even) to not be prisoners of compulsive projections of the future. They are here, connected and aware, living a meaningful happy life.  

Perhaps a question to reflect on today is: what do you consider to be a healthy work ethic? What do you do to thrive without becoming neurotic about it? How do you stay calm and content in challenging, demanding times and environments? Let me know what you think.

Connect.Reflect.Transend