The greatest weariness comes from work not done.
~ Eric Hoffer
During a conversation with an associate, I mentioned that I was flying out of state to be the keynote speaker for an event, after a brief chat when we were saying goodbye, he offered the following advice. “Don’t work too hard.”
I acknowledged the thought at the time and later realized that I often hear people say this to others, but why? Are we supposed to be lazy? Is there some sort of danger in working hard? Does hard work slowly attack our immune system and eventually kill us? Actually, no.
Okay, okay, before you respond that being overworked can’t possibly be good for you – think about this. Are you overworked or does it seem that way when the return or reward of the work isn’t what it should be? Are you getting things done that matter? yes, if you are employed doing something you don’t have passion for, that can be stressful but why are you doing that? Also, the odds are that you’re stressed at home as well as everywhere else in your life. If so, can you really blame your career?
Secondly, (and this is very good news), in September 2012 an ABC news show featured Dr. Marc Gillinov and he said “being stressed on the job does not mean you will have a heart attack.” He went on to explain how major illness are related to other factors including high blood pressure, diet and other more commonly known causes.
Most people stress out because they know deep down in their soul that they haven’t given the necessary focus to important tasks or they haven’t completed them. This causes them to be overwhelmed. It’s also possible that they didn’t give it their best and they haven’t really worked hard during the work hours, leaving important tasks incomplete. That causes stress.
There is also something to be said about working effectively. We all know someone who works two jobs and still can’t make ends meet. In this case, is all of that hard work as beneficial as they had hoped? If someone is working their butt off, then why exactly are they still struggling? It may be because they are not working as hard in other areas of their life, for example, managing their finances.
You cannot put effort into one area while neglecting another area and expect things to change if those areas are related. There are often a combination of factors that will have an impact on your overall success. As far as I see it, the two most important things in your life that you can track and take control of are:
- Your money
- Your time
Are you putting time into becoming an expert at what you do by training, learning and growing, or are you chasing whatever followed the latest Pokemon phase? Are you investing your money in something that will return the greatest benefit or are you wasting it on the latest piece of technology or abusing credit cards? The main question to ask yourself is this:
How can you gain the greatest reward or return when investing your time and money?
And do that on a daily basis.
Talk is Cheap, Time is Priceless
I often hear people say they want to save money and pay down debt, yet when you track their finances, you clearly see that they continue to spend frivolously.
I’ve also witnessed executives say that their family is the most important thing and yet they miss special events, including their children’s birthdays or recitals, all because they “have to” work. You can say whatever you want, but you determine what your priorities are, you make the choice, therefore, it’s always what you do that matters.
All too often people willingly sacrifice the priceless to settle for the worthless. They talk about last night’s TV show rather than get on the phone and make a sales call. They buy a smart watch rather than pay down their credit card or invest. This cycle (and debt) costs you even more money in the long run and causes more stress. Long after the joy of the purchase fades you’re left in the negative, in more ways than one.
Working hard and accomplishing something is incredibly energizing and also raises your self esteem. Stressing out can have an adverse affect on your health. Which sounds better?
I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase “work smarter, not harder.” I think a better strategy is working smarter and harder, specifically, be more focused and effective when you work. This way that hard work can pay off with a larger harvest. Start tracking your time and your finances today, and create a plan to master all of the areas that you need growth in. Then make time for health, wealth and wisdom, and live a more rewarding life, it’s worth it!
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