It doesn’t have to be hard

I always enjoy catching up with my business contacts and referral partners over coffee or lunch.  I’ve observed that the ones who are excited, growing, and discovering new possibilities are the ones who have carved out a unique niche that they are passionate about.  While they are putting forth effort, it doesn’t FEEL like work to them.  I’m fortunate to be in that situation today also.  However, I can remember the early days of business when I resembled the hamster in a cage, on a treadmill, going nowhere fast.  Even though I was a successful attorney, doing what I was good at and getting paid well, there wasn’t a lot of joy or purpose in the work I was doing.  I was helping people, but the niche I fell into wasn’t what I was meant to do, at least not long term.

I’ll never forget a throw away comment a networking friend said to me one time over coffee.  He simply stated, “it doesn’t have to be hard.”  It stopped me dead in my tracks.  I paused, and asked, “really?”  I had somehow bought into the concept that working really hard was noble, even if you didn’t love the work.  I thought that your fun or joy came after you completed some good hard work.  Perhaps during your spare time pursuing a hobby or charity work, or time spent with family and friends.  I was never opposed to hard work, and gladly did it.  I just didn’t have a clue what joy looked like. 

For me, it took stripping away the comfort zone and really zeroing in on who I was, what I was created to do, what I loved to do, and what I’d do whether or not I got paid.  Once I had the answers to those questions and worked through the process with a coach, I was able to design a business out of my gifts, purpose, and passion.  The result has been joy in the process, as well as a successful outcome. Today’s success is often the result of effort put forth long ago, and I am now reaping what I sowed earlier.  Other times it doesn’t seem like work because it is fun, and within my area of giftedness. 

Points to ponder and share:

1)       Do you have an overall feeling of joy and purpose in your work?

2)      Does your career feel more like hard work, or a fun activity that you can hardly believe you get paid to do?

3)      We all experience crunch time where we have to buckle down, and other times we need to step back and reflect and possibly regroup to make sure we’re going in the right direction.  What tools or resources help you to refocus and move forward in your business?

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Lori T. Williams is a 25 year attorney based in Birmingham, MI.  As owner of a legal referral business called Your Legal Resource, PLLC, Lori personally assists individuals and small businesses in need of legal advice or representation in Metro Detroit by connecting them with the right legal specialist to meet their needs. Click here for a pdf of legal referral services. 

Through group training and events, Lori also focuses on referral marketing strategies for attorneys and other professionals. For more information about Lori or Your Legal Resource, visit www.bestlegalresource.com.  For networking events, training programs, and workshop information, visit: www.bestlegalresource.com/events.

 

3 responses to “It doesn’t have to be hard”

  1. Yinka olaito

    When a person does not have overall positive feelings about his/her job, such an individual needs a new strategy or a new job that excites them.

  2. Angelo Darin, Darin Consulting Group LLC

    Very good article and it was on point. Feeling good about what we do isn’t a destination but the process that touches our lives and others that we influence. The sad thing is that there are many people that struggle through their profession instead of doing what they love or doing it in the manner that would empower them.

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