I saw Paul McCartney in concert last night. It was one of those bucket-list types of things, something I had wanted since I first became aware of music as a kid growing up in the sixties. Never dreamed I would have to wait 50 years, or that I would still need him when he was way past 64 – which we all thought was about as old as a person could get.
Of course he was wonderful.
But there is something else about Paul McCartney that kept niggling at my brain all night. Here is this guy who has lived so much, done so much, lost so much … here he is playing and singing his heart out, and loving every minute of it. He could be sunning himself on a yacht, or whatever the truly rich and famous do for fun. Instead, he’s still out there, working.
And it hit me, this is what we all need: To truly fall in love – or fall in love again – with our work. Loving your work every day brings a sustaining joy to life that carries you through, or maybe it lifts you over, every single frustration, the ups and downs and even the terrible disappointments and losses that life throws at us all.
Paul once said of his career, “When we were starting off as kids, just the idea of maybe going to do this as a living instead of getting what we thought was going to be a boring job, was exciting.”
Clearly, he still finds his job exciting.
You know what? So do I. (Yeah, I get that running a legal marketing firm may not be as exciting a career as being a Beatle … but since I can’t carry a tune in a bucket, that gig was never happening for me!)
I get up every morning and get to work with some of the brightest, most articulate and most demanding folks on the planet – attorneys. Now there are people who might think that a curse, but not me.
Can you guys be difficult? Absolutely. But I can’t think of another group of people who would keep me on my toes, keep pushing me to do better and be better – every single day.
I hope you find that kind of love in your work. If you’re feeling particularly frustrated right now, one of the best things you can do is push back from your desk, grab a cool glass of water and take a few moments to reflect on the good stuff. Some people say count your blessings, others call it meditation or even self-reflection. Whatever terms you use, taking a moment to remember the good stuff can re-energize you, make you happier and stronger. Strong enough to either deal with the not-so-great stuff … or get rid of it!