How Do You Deal with the Daily Grind?

No matter how much you love your job or life, we all have parts of our roles that are less satisfying. There are many skills to develop. Many of us complain, and some of us are lucky enough to be able to delegate tasks we find monotonous or grueling.

Another option is to embrace a sense of play and transform the daily grind into an opportunity for joy. For example, I have paired listening to audiobooks with my daily exercise of climbing stairs. I also track the number of steps I take, which adds to the fun. I listen to music while doing some tasks and enjoy dark chocolate without guilt during some others. I may talk with a friend while cleaning the kitchen. I often draw while waiting for someone or something. Of course, your sense of joy and play will likely differ. We can each fashion our sense of deliberate play. I often work with my coaching clients to identify how to introduce play and create more joy in their lives. Adding a simple check-in to meetings can enhance the spirit of play and connection.

According to Adam Grant, in his book Hidden Potential, deliberate play introduces novelty and variety to skill practice and supports learning. Purposeful play can sustain joy and help us achieve greater things.

If we push ourselves too hard to learn a skill or do a job, we can experience emotional exhaustion or burnout. Studies show that those obsessed with their work and put in longer hours do not perform better than their peers. On the other hand, if we remain understimulated, with a lack of joy, we can experience boreout.

When we align with our passion and find meaning in our work or personal life, we can approach the grind with more ease. Research indicates that persistence is more likely to result in performance when passion is present. Moreover, when we infuse our tasks with a playful spirit, we rely less on willpower and experience a boost in motivation and energy, even in the face of the daily grind.

How have you been incorporating deliberate play into your life and work? Sharing your experiences cannot only inspire others but also foster a sense of community, where we can learn from each other’s strategies and successes.

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