Effort Less

I realize that this is much more touchy-feely than most of my writing, but I’m not completely devoid of such sentimentalities.  If you find this a bit hippy-dippy (and man I struggled with that myself, but I wrote it so I’m going to post it), tough this is my blog and I get to ramble about whatever I want.  Anyway, back to our (ir)regularly scheduled posting.

You get an ‘A’ for effort.

Almost everyone’s heard that phrase before.  It means you tried hard, as hard as you likely can and that those efforts are being recognized.  Effort is admirable, we should all aspire to put our all into things that matter to us.  I’m not going to say everything, because if we’re being honest not everything deserves our best effort.  Effort is a finite resource, there’s only so much trying hard or working hard we have in us on a given day and you have to ration it out the way you do time and attention.  Certainly you should always perform a job you were hired to and I certainly believe that anything worth doing is worth doing right, but that doesn’t mean I think you should necessarily put your all into a soul-sucking J.O.B. you’re just suffering through because you have bills to pay and not many options.  Feel free to simply expend the effort required to do the job correctly and don’t feel bad if you don’t spend all your time trying to optimize the checkout line or product set-up (Again, unless that’s your job).

Effort should be saved for those things that light a fire in you, the passions that nurture who you are and what makes you happy.  Because when you spend your effort on these things, the effort goes farther.  Effort is like a fuel; this fuel will power just about any engine, but some engines will run better, more efficiently and so much more cleanly and some are terrible gas-guzzlers.  The gas-guzzlers might be necessary but they shouldn’t be run more than they have to because, like other kinds of engines, there are by-products to running them.  Effort exhaust is when you’ve used up all your effort and you’re tired and possibly frustrated and cranky with all that you’ve had to do.  You don’t want to do anything, not even think.  At that point even those pursuits that do fulfill you will feel insurmountable and not worth the effort.  But it’s not that they aren’t worth the effort, it’s that you have no more to give.

There will be days when it takes you all just to make it through, when all you will be left with is exhaust.  It’s unavoidable and that’s ok, don’t beat yourself up on the days when you can’t find it in you to do more. But when you can, hold some of that effort back so that you can use it on something you love.  When you nurture your passions the byproduct isn’t exhaust (or rather it isn’t just exhaust because not every effort goes well, even if you do love what you’re doing! XD), it’s inspiration.  Inspiration for you to keep doing what makes you happy and fulfills you and inspiration to others that they’re allowed to seek out what fulfills them too.

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