When you’re building your career, some of the work you do is exciting. Some of it is not. In fact, some of it is downright monotonous.
So how do you make the best of a mundane job or activity? How do we still bring our full self to work that we know, over time, has the chance to help us go further in our career and further in life but, at the moment, just feels like the same thing we did last week and the week before that?
The first thing you have to do is ask yourself if this mundane activity is moving you closer to where you want to go. Does it help you clarify the win? As leaders and as an organization it’s very important to clarify the win and fully understand what our end goal is.
For example, let’s take churches that deliver content. Due to our current situation in regards to COVID-19, these churches have shifted to producing online content. But they have to ask the question of if the online content distribution is having the desired return on investment of activity and time. But when you see that the mundane is leading you there and you start to see results, then it will become less mundane.
Another example is how a lot of us don’t like to exercise but we do like, ultimately, where it's going to take us. Not just physically, but emotionally. So the desired goal can be enough for us to move forward toward that mundane activity.
The other thing we should do is put the mundane in its place. What that means is you should think about where this activity has a place in your life. From there you can decide to block out time to do it yourself or delegate it. But you should contemplate how it adds to your overall plan. And if it doesn’t, then think about eliminating it. But if it does, that creates a more meaningful way to go about getting that mundane activity done. If it’s a means to an end and adds value to your overall goal then it will appear less mundane and more meaningful.
So, in closing, in order to get the most value from the mundane, you want to, first, make sure you understand how it connects to your ultimate objective. The activity itself may not be exciting but the results it produces may be incredible for you. You also want to think about how if you accomplish this work at the right time and in the right way you can make sure that it isn’t something that drags on you. Then you can complete it effectively and quickly and move on to whatever else may be next on your list. But the most important thing to remember is that you can make the mundane meaningful in your work and in your life every day.