1283 Chapters
Medium 9781576752630

9. Your Job is Bigger than You Think

Izzo, John B. Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

67

“There are no great acts, only small acts performed with great love.”
—Mother Teresa


It was the first week of my first year in graduate school. I had arrived in Chicago to study for the Presbyterian ministry and it was the middle of the year. Aware that I must work to fund my studies, I searched for a nice “save-the-world” part-time job, only to discover that all these had already been taken. No work in hospitals, social service agencies, anti-nuke organizations—nothing.

My new neighbors were a nice young couple from Wisconsin. Joe Hughes was studying for the Lutheran ministry and working part-time as a postal clerk in a small substation within a drug store on the south side of Chicago. In the middle of one of the poorest neighborhoods in the richest country in the world, Joe peddled stamps for 20 hours each week. “It doesn’t pay all that well,” Joe admitted, “but it is steady work and I enjoy it. If you want, I could put in a good word for you.”

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So he did, and a week later I started my six-month tenure as a postal clerk. Within a week my enthusiasm for the new job was history. For 20 hours each week, for the rest of the year, the young, would-be savior of the world licked stamps, printed money orders, and weighed packages. Yuck!

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Medium 9781626560536

Contents

Showkeir, Maren S. Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub
Medium 9781577310778

Losing Yourself in the Divine

New World Library ePub

When you create you lose yourself in your creation. Time seems to stand still and all else is forgotten. You participate in the divine play that is creativity. These moments offer a glimpse of who you really are: a being fashioned in the image and likeness of God. Like the source of all creation, you are a creator, too. It is your divine birthright. The person who says “I’m not creative” is uttering blasphemy. The truth is that you are the Creative Self expressing through the human vessel of your body, emotions, mind, and soul. Creativity flows through you as a universal life force, called by many names throughout the ages: chi, prana, shakti, the Holy Spirit. It is this energy of love flowing through you that also gives life to your creations.

The medium in which you create is irrelevant. It doesn’t matter whether you write a business proposal, play a piano sonata, or prepare a delicious meal. You may be seeking to resolve one of life’s mundane problems or to express deep feelings and insights through poetry. Embrace your creation as a lover and you can break through to another realm. When you stick with it for better or for worse, your creation becomes your guru (Sanskrit meaning “from darkness to light”).

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Medium 9781626562615

Appendix: Retorts To Multitask Hardliners

Zack, Devora Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Conviction is worthless unless it is converted to conduct.

CARLYLE

How can you explain the singletasking way to those die-hard multitaskers in your life?

Enjoy this sampling of real-life statements I’ve collected from my loveable, delusional, multitasking friends, accompanied by snappy replies for your edification (table 6). Add your own zingers in the third column.

Go ahead and tear out this chart and carry it everywhere you go. Be my guest. Think of it as a cheat sheet of retorts.

TABLE 6: Responses to Multitaskers

MUFFLED PROTEST OF MISGUIDED YET WELL-INTENTIONED DIE-HARD TASK-SWITCHERS

MY POLITE, YET FIRM RESPONSE, SUPPORTED BY MORE FIGURES THAN A PARISIAN FASHION SHOW

YOUR OWN DAZZLING, EDGY REPLY THAT FAR OUTPACES MINE IN SHEER BRILLIANCE

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Medium 9781605093512

ONE The Road to Somewhere

Reynolds, Marcia Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

A few years ago, I was listening to a luncheon speaker talk about the difference between what is most important to men and women in the workplace. He said men tend to focus on career and how they can drive their way up the ladder. Then, for numerous reasons, they shift to focusing on intimacy as they age. On the other hand, women focus first on intimacy. As they age and their children grow up, they focus on career. I said, “Not the women I know.”

After three decades of training and coaching high-achieving women, I have noticed an evolution of their needs and desires. In the past, my female clients longed for life balance; now they get bored if their plate isn’t full of new and exciting challenges where they can showcase their skills. Once they were desperate to overcome their fears; now they want help laying out a clear career path so they can quit making brash decisions. They used to ask for assertiveness skills; now they are looking for ways to better formulate their words so people will quit questioning them and get on board with their ideas. Women still face inequities in the workplace and difficulties juggling their many responsibilities. Yet something has changed in the women themselves, the way they approach life, the way they work, and the way they relentlessly show up even when they aren’t sure what they are fighting for. In essence, the answer to the questions “who am I?” and “what does this all mean to me?” have changed. Instead of an evolution of behaviors from one generation of high-achieving women to the next, a revolution is going on as you read this page.

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