Work

“In dealing with your career and its inevitable changes, you must think in the following way: You are not tied to a particular position; your loyalty is not to a career or a company.  You are committed to your Life’s Task, to giving it full expression.  It is up to you to find it and guide it correctly.  It is not up to others to protect or help you.  You are on your own.” ~ Robert Greene, Mastery

“The misery that oppresses you lies not in your profession but in yourself!  What man in the world would not find his situation intolerable if he chooses a craft, an art, indeed any form of life, without experiencing an inner calling?  Whoever is born with a talent, or to a talent, must surely find in that the most pleasing of occupations!  Everything on this earth has its difficult sides!  Only some inner drive—pleasure, love—can help us overcome obstacles, prepare a path, and lift us out of the narrow circle in which others tread out their anguished, miserable existences!” ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, via Mastery

“You possess a kind of inner force that seeks to guide you toward your Life’s Task—what you are meant to accomplish in the time that you have to live.  In childhood this force was clear to you.  It directed you toward activities and subjects that fit you natural inclinations, that sparked a curiosity that was deep and primal.  In the intervening years, the force tends to fade in and out as you listen more to parents and peers, to the daily anxieties that wear away at you.  This can be the source of your unhappiness—your lack of connection to who you are and what makes you unique.  The first move toward mastery is always inward—learning who you really are and reconnecting with that innate force.  Knowing it with clarity, you will find your way to the proper career path and everything else will fall into place.  It is never too late to start this process.” ~ Robert Greene, Mastery

“Simple truth:  fast and busy are a choice.  We choose to go fast and be busy because we think it’ll get us what we want.  All too often, it doesn’t  Fast and busy makes life brittle.  It makes us feel like every inch of space in life is locked in and there’s no room to move.  Instead of unlocking productivity and potential, it throttles both.  It deludes us into feeling like we’re getting more done faster, but in reality, we could get the same done in the same or less time with more grace by dialing it back, not forward.  In the end, we’re left feeling dissatisfied and helpless to extract ourselves from the process.  Except we’re not.  It’s all an illusion.” ~ Jonathan Fields, How To Live A Good Life

“Research shows that once one is able to provide for basic physical needs (food, shelter, and so on), the correlation between happiness and worldly success quickly approaches zero.  So if you’re starving and living on the street in the middle of India, an extra ten thousand dollars a year would affect your happiness a lot.  But if you’re sitting pretty in the middle class in a developed country, an extra ten thousand dollars per year won’t affect anything much—meaning that you’re killing yourself working overtime and weekends for basically nothing.” ~ Mark Mason, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

“Success for me has little to do with money or possessions or status.  Rather, success is a simple equation: Happiness + Growth + Contribution = Success.  That’s the only kind of success I know.  Hence, I want to partake in work that makes me happy, work that encourages me to grow, work that helps me contribute beyond myself.  Ultimately, I want to create more and consume less.  Doing so requires real work.” ~ The Minimalists, Everything That Remains

“Success is intoxicating, yet to sustain it requires sobriety.  We can’t keep learning if we think we already know everything.  We cannot buy into myths we make ourselves, or the noise and chatter of the outside world.  We must understand that we are a small part of an interconnected universe.  On top of all this, we have to build an organization and a system around what we do – one that is about the work and not about us.” ~ Ryan Holiday, Ego is the Enemy

“Work is finding yourself alone at the track when the weather kept everyone else indoors.  Work is pushing through the pain and crappy first drafts and prototypes.  It is ignoring whatever plaudits others are getting, and more importantly, ignoring whatever plaudits you may be getting.  Because there is work to be done.  Work doesn’t want to be good.  It is made so, despite the headwind.” ~ Ryan Holiday, Ego is the Enemy

“Every time you sit down to work, remind yourself: I am delaying gratification by doing this.  I am passing the marshmallow test.  I am earning what my ambition burns for.  I am making an investment in myself instead of in my ego.  Give yourself a little credit for this choice, but not so much, because you’ve got to get back to the task at hand: practicing, working, improving.” ~ Ryan Holiday, Ego is the Enemy

“Living clearly and presently takes courage.  Don’t live in the haze of the abstract, live with the tangible and real, even if – especially if – it’s uncomfortable.  Be part of what’s going on around you.  Feast on it, adjust for it.  There’s no one to perform for. There is just work to be done and lessons to be learned, in all that is around us.” ~ Ryan Holiday, Ego is the Enemy

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