“Ah, I forgot my lunch this morning.”
“I very rarely eat lunch.”
“Really? Why not?”
“Well I hate buying it for one thing..”
“Oh and you hate carrying things too.”
“Yeah, so I’ll usually fill up on a good breakfast to get me through the day, but I’m usually pretty hungry by dinner.”
I overheard this conversation about 3 minutes ago as two middle-aged men gathered at the MARC exit door to Rockville station. I’m not sure if they were friends or just frequent riders. The conversation was simple, but revealed so much more about the man who was just sitting next to me in the seat too small for the both of us. It made me think about the way he makes decisions and prioritizes things in his life. When he first said he didn’t each lunch, I figured it would be followed up with some statement about being too busy because I saw him dialing away at emails on his blackberry earlier. I thought lunch was another one of those in the way steps of feeling accomplished in our to do list driven lives. His reasoning was simple really, but it’s the “to get me through the day” part that sparked my interest.
Breakfast would be his first and last meal until dinner to get him through his day. Whatever he ate that morning would have to hold him through the day because that was the decision he made from cost and comfort. Does he put extra thought into his breakfast? Does he think before pouring a mediocre sized bowl of Cheerios will this get me through my day?
What gets you through your day? I don’t mean what meals or snacks do you consume to provide that physical energy, but what gives you that spark to get through another day that could be just like the other?I know everyone in student affairs says no day is alike, but I mean really they are. We aren’t really that special. What gets you through the monotony of your fifth committee meeting where nothing seems to get done? What gets you thorough that boring one on one where you just want to through your hands up and walk out? It’s crazy to think how often people’s professional lives are eight hours of “getting through” until they can work resume their personal life or vice versa.
I’m reading this book that talks about how to live a happier life blah blah and it talks about how your work and personal life shouldn’t be separate. You should bring the same passions to your work as your do your personal. What you do for work is serving your organization and those impacted, while what you do for home is serving and providing for you family. No matter the location, it’s all service driven by some passion. If you don’t love your personal or professional or really what should be the marriage of the two, maybe think about reconsider what you’re doing to get through the day.
In a perfect world, everyone would be in their dream career with their dream lives. That may not always happen to the tee, but there are ways you can influence your life to do more than just get through the day, but actually embrace and enjoy your day. It’s always the little things that make me remember why I love what I do and who I am. It’s the little Facebook notes or emails. It’s the little laughs or moments I want to punch someone in the face. There are things that get me through the day beyond waiting for it to be over. If you can’t find this is in work, take on a new hobby or a new pet. We are charged with keeping our lives rich and fulfilled, so do something to spark your inner child and do more than just get through the day.