I woke up early this morning for a Sunday and even earlier ‘cos it’s the end of Daylight Saving. I read quite a bit at 6.30 this morning from Zite – the on-line magazine you tailor to suit your interests (and prejudices too no doubt!) – including a piece about happiness and the need for us all to play without a goal. Like kids do. And on your hands and knees sometimes.
Martin Seligman, the author of “Authentic Happiness” is quoted as saying the three pillars of mental health are love, work and play.
I’ve seen an awful lot of work lately, come to think of it I always have. Why do we work so hard? Or you might think work so poorly that you have to spend way too much time at work. Which could be true. Work can be play of course and can bring satisfaction.
If, on the other hand we’re working hard for money because we believe at one level that that will bring happiness then it might be worth thinking about Martin Seligman’s other work on positive psychology. He talks about three life states: the pleasant life (things) the good life (discovering our unique strengths) and the meaningful life (finding a meaning for our life greater than just us).
Money gives us the pleasant life. Work gives us money. But neither can give us the good life or the meaningful life on its own.
An extra hour gave me some play, a hint of the good life (whether it’s any good or not I’ve blogged again!) and even some time to reflect on meaning.
I’m loving the extra hour!
Collecting the clock from after its refurbishment before Christmas the Clockmaker declared it “fully wound, you should rewind it every week”. The clock has three wind mechanisms – the clock, the hourly signals and the fifteen minute chimes. I don’t usually have the latter two wound, preferring not to be woken every fifteen minutes. Somehow Grandma could sleep through it though!
So I’ve been removing the weight, the thing that keeps the “tick tock” going, a lovely soothing sound, during the evening. Sometimes I’m too busy or don’t remember to put the weight back in so it’s taking quite a few weeks to wind down the offending chimes.
It’s a long weekend for the top half of the North Island and another one for the whole country next week, thanks to Waitangi Day being on the Monday. Having been back at work for two weeks there’s a lingering sense of holding on to the holidays with two long weekends in a row. And hoping that we might get more than a few summer days in a row!
Leadership is always on show – I’ve blogged about that many times. You know, if you run into a leader you admire in the weekend, will you find the same person you know or know of if it’s a public leader? You should do I reckon. If they’re an authentic leader.
But leadership is also about taking the weight off when you can and when you need to. Some people like Grandma never seemed to need to – she was a hardworking woman who was doing the accounts for a local business well into her seventies – and later, yes later, Patron of the local Bridge club.
I’m nursing some soreness which is meaning a bit of a stand-down from long runs at the moment, so that combined with the long weekends means taking the weight off for a bit. Even though it’s the start of the year, it’s still a good time to build resilience. In fact it’s always a good time to build resilience so take the weight off when you can, whatever time of the year it is.
Maybe just overnight, like the clock!
You’ll be a better leader for it.