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04/25/2011

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How Much of Life (and Work) is a Game?

I still continue to believe that success at life (and at work) requires a combination of content and style. I wrote about it when I first started blogging. This post is about the "style" you have while living your life and the perception of your friends and your family about you live. The "content" side of your life is pretty straightforward:

Doing what is expected and needed
Doing things the right way
Delivering expected results

I don't know your life, so I can't tell you what you need to do. But I'd like you to think about how you do it, the style with which you do so.

How do you handle adversity? If things are bad in your life, what shows when someone looks at you? Do they know that you feel beaten or that you are going to rise to this challenge and be successful no matter what?

Do you make your wife/husband/partner/family look good? Your family and friends' support make you a better person. Have you ever thought about how your life makes them look better?

How about your peer interaction? I'm not expecting you to make all your business connections at home, but do you occasionally enjoy non-business activities after work? It's important. And you might like it.

Are you coming across as alive as you are? I hate to say it, but you occasionally need to toot your own horn. You can be subtle and still do it directly—by sharing some new, fresh experiences with your friends and family. And remember your accomplishments and why they are important to your happiness.

Some interpersonal and visibility thoughts:

Live well with your friends and family, all the time. Don't sulk, don't be snarky, don't be seen complaining (save if for the office — occasionally.)

I worked late most nights. But if you don't have that much time do you at least read a book to your kids and respond to your partner's needs?
If you have chat systems (AOL IM, Lotus Sametime, etc.) are you visible to your friends and family during the day? Cheesy, eh? Well—that's work (oops, I mean life!).

What's negative?

The person who comes across with no initiative.
The person who can't seem to navigate the joy of living.
The person who doesn't smile when given a challenge.

We've all heard that aphorism that "perception is reality". It's true and you have to think about your how others perceive you. If you get a confusing or difficult challenge does any negativity come through to your family and friends? Even if you have no idea, approach every moment in a positive manner and start to dig in.

What about work? Do these same tenets hold? You bet! As a matter of fact you might behave better in life because you might have some odd thought that something important is at stake (like your career). But at work, if you want to be grumpy what's the problem? Well—what about your relationships?

So be that hardworking, smiling person in the home and at the office. As Gillette said in 1984, "Never let them see you sweat".

Above is my flip on your original post. Amazing what swapping out a few simple words can do. Great post, Jon!

Nicely done, Mike! You know I believe that the content and style thing is critical all the time - and this really shows why!

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