May 20, 2014 Jeff Haden @Jeff_Haden
See what you think. Though some of the following may not be true all of the time, when you love what you do, many should be the case much of the time. There's a results chart at the end, so keep track of how many apply to you:
1. You don't struggle to stay disciplined; you struggle to prioritize. Your problem definitely isn't staying busy and on task. Getting going isn't an issue. Your problem is you have so many things you want to do, you struggle to decide what to do first.
2. You think, I hope I get to... instead of, I hope I don't have to... When you love your work, it's like peeling an onion. There are always more layers to discover and explore. When you hate your work it's also like peeling an onion--but all you find are more tears.
3. You don't talk about other people; you talk about the cool things other people are doing. "I hear Chad just invested in a startup. What are they working on?" "I can't believe Angie won their business back; I'd love to know how she did it." "Cecilia developed a new sales channel. Let's ask her how we can best leverage that."
When you love your work, you don't gossip about the personal failings of others. You talk about their successes, because you're happy for them (which is also also a sign you're happy with yourself.)
4. You think about what you will say, not how you will say it. You don't have to worry about agendas or politics or subtle machinations. You trust your team members--and they trust you.
5. You see your internal and external customers not as people to satisfy but simply as people. You don't see customers as numbers. They're real people who have real needs. And you gain a real sense of fulfillment and purpose from taking care of those needs.
6. You enjoy your time at work. You don't have to put in time at work and then escape to "life" to be happy. You enjoy life and enjoy work. You feel alive and joyful not just at home but also at work. When you love your work, it's a part of your life.
7. You enjoy attending meetings. No, seriously, you enjoy meetings. Why? Because you like being at the center of thoughtful, challenging discussions that lead to decisions, initiatives, and changes--changes you help make happen.
8. You don't think about surviving. You think about winning. You don't worry much about your business failing. You're more worried about your business not achieving its potential. And you worry about whether you're making as big an impact as you can. Those are good worries.
9. You're excited about what you're doing, but you're more excited about the people you're doing it with. Why? They're smart. Passionate. Confident. Funny. Dedicated. Giving. Inspiring.
10. You hardly ever look at the clock. You're too busy making things happen. And when you do look at the clock, you often find that the time has flown.
11. You view success in terms of fulfillment and gratification, not just money. Everyone wants to build something bigger. Everyone wants to benefit financially. Yet somewhere along the way, your work has come to mean a lot more to you than just a living. And if you left your business, even if for something that paid more, you would miss it. A lot.
12. You leave work with items on your to-do list you're excited about tackling tomorrow. Many people cross the fun tasks off their to-do lists within the first hour or two. You often have cool stuff--new initiatives, side projects, hunches you want to confirm with data, people you want to talk to--left over when it's time to go home.
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