Sorry for the big pause said the bear, I was babysitting my very sweet nieces.
Goals. Plans. Aspirations. Making moves. It’s all more or less future-based. Look at your next thing. The next job. The next raise. The next car. Etc, etc. That’s all fine. To a degree. If we don’t look to the future we can easily forget where we’d like to go and lose sight of the things we want to achieve.
However, there’s a major flaw with this, a couple actually.
Firstly, if we are just looking at the next thing, it comes at what cost? Are we willing to trample people to get there and avoid nurturing current relationships? The second, and perhaps more fundamental, is that we undervalue what we do in the here and now.
Someone (sorry, I’ve looked it up and can’t find who), said something like “A small task, done well, has nobility.” Sounds good to me. I’ve written before about not multitasking and that’s a good reason to have agency in your work, but this is a bit different. This is about trusting in the universe. Gulp. Yeah. Trust the process. Do your job. You may well have much higher aspirations and consider what you do to be beneath you but as soon as you start ‘having ideas above your station’ it all falls apart. What do I mean by ‘it’?
If we only think about our aspirations we lose the importance, attention to detail, learning, quality of what we are doing. On the other hand if we put all of ourselves into the job in front of us, we can – as our anonymous friend says – make it noble. Want to run a multi-million pound company but your job is making the tea, then make the tea and learn from those you’re serving it to. Want to be an award winning film maker but you’re only rigging the set? Make it the best rigged set ever and your work will get noticed. Whatever it is, do it to the best of your ability and the rest will follow.