The Daily Stoic for May 29th. “Work Is Therapy”.
“Work nourishes noble minds.”
—SENECA, MORAL LETTERS, 31.5
Some days ago, while writing about Where to find joy, I discussed precisely about how I am the kind of person who loves doing stuff.
In my case, it’s not about how to stop working. It’s about being able to occupy my time with stuff I love. If I am honest with you, I would not be able to stay on a permanent vacation in some tropical island forever…
However, I have to admit that, since I quit my steady job and became a freelancer, I have been working a lot. Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do now, and I loved working as a freelance developer.
So while it’s true that working on stuff you love is radically different from being trapped in a cubicle, you are still the majority of your time there.
Up to the point when you finally decide to take another leap and transition from a freelancer to an entrepreneur in order to be able to work on something that would eventually bring you money without exchanging time for it.
That holy grail sometimes referred to as “passive income“.
While I have experienced partial success in this area, I am not yet there. I still have to work to pay my bills.
Work Is Therapy
And I completely agree with the author of today’s stoic. After some days of skipping the gym, I feel nervous and irritable. I love going to the gym, and the exercise helps me boost my energy and relax my mind.
Nonetheless, when you’ve been going to the gym for 15 years… some mornings you just don’t feel like going. At all.
While you can easily skip one gym day, the same is not true for work. If you need to get up and get some stuff done, you need to get up. There’s no “I’ll go tomorrow”.
When you are 20-something… that’s ok. However, I am 38. I am no spring chicken, and I think the time has come for me to work -smarter, not harder- on something that can bring me money tomorrow without spending 40 hours a week on it.
Yes, “Work is therapy”, agreed. And I am the type of guy that loves doing stuff, the kind of person whose mind is always spinning with new things to do. Nevertheless, as you grow older and wiser, you realize that you should be working smarter, not harder, on something that will allow you to live more and work less tomorrow.