You will spend more of your adult life at the office than anywhere else. This fact popped into my mind as I was cleaning out some old files and came across a 2008 WSJ article on David Foster Wallace.
David Foster Wallace on Life and Work
Adapted from a commencement speech given by David Foster Wallace to the 2005 graduating class at Kenyon College. Mr. Wallace, 46, died last Friday.
In this too long for my taste article, Wallace makes a great observation and then a great point. His observation:
“At some point work involves boredom, routine and petty frustration”
Yes, no matter your job or the company you work for some of your days will be blah. (Not when you should call a recruiter BTW) The challenge is in keeping in touch with the things in your life that balance it out so that these “blah” days don’t cramp your ability to perform at a high level.
I think this is what attracts so many to social media during the work day. Facebook, Google + , Twitter, etcetera are filled with the stories of what matters. Babies, weddings, funerals, pets, vacations, new…cars, boats, rings, girl/boy friends, if it is fun and makes someone happy you are sure to find it posted!
Top performers surround themselves with little reminders of what motivates, excites, inspires them outside of work. It is these little reminders that keep us sane. It may be a photo, a trinket from a trip, framed tickets from the big game, or a trophy or award, but the reminder of who you are past your job needs to be with you at all times.
Wallace last point was a great one.
“It is unimaginably hard to do this, to stay conscious and alive, day in and day out”
Is there room on your desk for what makes you happy? Yes? Good job! No? Clean out that in box and make some room, it will be good for you!