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Hype, Hype, Hype.

Even worse than the Christmas hullaballoo, I think, is the New Years ruckus. 

I don't usually do a New Year's Resolution, but having just completed my latest round of Your Next 6 Months Forever, I have a few thoughts about what I'd like to do differently this year.
 
My primary objective in 2013 is to "Design my work like manual labor". I've long noticed that manual labor is often far more fulfilling than so called "knowledge work" for a few different reasons. 
 
A) it's challenging. It combines a joy of mastery with a feeling of strength and power. When I did roofing, the work was hot, physically demanding, and occasionally dangerous, and that's what made it fun-- knowing that most people wouldn't be able to handle it, but that I could, made it worth the scorching heat and aching muscles. Because it was only more proof of how incredibly capable I was!
 
B) it's got measurable and visible progress baked in. This sense of "progress is being made" is a crucial aspect of designing you work, especially as a solopreneur. But you also can't have visible progress mean "progress the world sees". It needs to apply even to foundational work.

If I want to build a shed, first I have to create a plan, or design. Then, when the schematics are done, I need to create a materials list and a project plan. Then I need to assemble the materials. After that, you have to prepare the foundation or pilings, make sure EVERYTHING is straight and level, double-check all your measurements and assumptions before you're FINALLY ready to build. When I did roofing, two-thirds of the work was stripping the old roof and preparing it for new shingles. By the time you've laid the first course, you're practically done!
 
And so it is with manual labor. Also, there's a clear cut order to everything. SOME stuff can be done simultaneously, but rarely. So you have to just figure out your steps and ignore everything else until it's done. 
 
Finally, C) manual laborers take lots of breaks. They know they're not going home before the work is done, or at least at a good stopping point, so there's no point in going too fast, and screwing up, getting hurt, or otherwise exhausting yourself. Because you still have to show up for another 12-hour day tomorrow, don't you? Plus, a break is a good time for a brainwave to happen, so you really ought to give them every opportunity to occur, oughten you? :P 
 
So that's my main objective for the year. Blue-collar workers are Makers, too, and they've mastered the art of shipping while under constraints. They don't get a lot of credit for it, but I'm going to emulate the shit out of them this year. I want that satisfaction, that amount of Creation, and that grace and resourcefulness under Constraints.
 
What's your main objective for 2013? I'd love to hear from you.
Cheers, 
Shanna

PS: If you're thinking about coaching to nudge you along on this objective, you'll find some info here.




 


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