When I’ve studied Vedanta, one of the world’s oldest philosophies, I was struck by Swami Parthasarathy’s assertion that we shouldn’t need a weekend. If we work for a higher purpose, he says, work wouldn’t be work – it would just be what we do, and we wouldn’t tire from it or want to escape it come Friday.
So today is Friday and what I really need is more time in the office. I’m not going to say thank God it’s the weekend though I do need that long-prescribed day of rest. But because I was away for a week, celebrating the holiness of the new year, now I need to delve deeper into the work before me.
Higher purpose. Clear path. Elevation.
It all exists in the work on my desk and the multiple-page to-do list.
What I need is time.
So it’s up to me to create it, right? No one is going to give me an extra few hours, and really we shouldn’t need that. We should do as we do, give our heart and soul into the work before us, and the rest will take care of itself.
If we do the work, the rest will take care of itself.
If we do the work.
See, there’s a condition there – you have to do your part, what is appropriate and normal for the industry you’re in. Do your part, the rest will flow.
Years ago when I was religious in Judaism, I bought a thin little book called Thou Shalt Not Want. It talked about the Jewish religious perspective on money, and what it said was that the Almighty expects you to work the number of hours that are appropriate for your job – if you’re a lawyer in a high-powered firm, you might need to put in 60-80 hours a week.
But if you work in a coffee shop and it’s typical to do 30 or 40 hours in a week, don’t think that by working overtime, you’re suddenly going to strike gold. That was the gist of the book.
It was a lesson in humility for me. Do the work and the money will come. I first heard this from the mouths of an old boyfriend’s parents, back in college.
Today, it’s not about the money. Money comes and money goes, it’s just not that important. It’s the work and knowing you did a good job, the right job, exactly what the job required. Do the work. That’s all to strive for. Have a great weekend.