What Do You Actually Do?
An examination of work that is not measured in monetary terms.
We usually identify the word "work" with our job or profession, as a method to make money and maintain a certain quality of life. Whenever someone asks, "What are you up to?" Answering this question accidentally touches on your professional life. To labor can be construed in many different ways that are not pecuniary in nature.
As a worker, I've always established objectives, developed strategies, made plans and put in the effort to overcome hurdles in order to attain my goals. My finest work is guaranteed, even if I don't get the intended result.
In addition to my "job" as a nutritionist and Pilates instructor, I am always exploring new hobbies and interests. A marathon training regimen may be challenging, especially for a runner who has never ran a marathon before. The decision to run 26.2 miles does not just happen (or 42.2 kilometers). A decade ago, I began distance running with shorter runs that eventually progressed to longer distances and faster paces. Runners may think running five kilometers is easy, but even just getting out the door and going for a run requires effort. Running a marathon requires more preparation than any other type of athletic event. When it comes to sports, even the greatest players might appear to have it all together. To enjoy the ultimate product, one must be willing to put in the effort.
I like reading and writing, and I am frequently asked how I manage to read so much or publish so much. I'm not paid to read, therefore it's not work in the classic sense. Because of how much time you spend physically poring over a book and personalizing the author's tale, reading is in fact effort. Instead of sitting around unread, books would be if readers didn't put in the effort to read. Reading, finishing a book, evaluating a narrative, writing a review, and interacting with writers on social media are all types of employment.
In order to get my writing published, I have to produce tales, curate essay ideas, and use poems when prose doesn't evoke the proper feelings. There are submission calls, editor requirements are read and followed. Acceptances are received with ecstasy, while rejections are handled in stride and used as a springboard to create something greater. There is a lot more to writing than just sitting down and typing. As a writer, my passion for the written word motivates me to put in my best efforts and work towards finding a home for my writings. Nothing happens until you work for it.
All of these things need effort without the need for money. Maintaining relationships, caring for pets, cultivating plants and learning new languages are just a few examples. The only way to perfect the piano, even if someone pays you to do so, is to practice. Who knows how much work one would put in if they weren't getting paid? The work I do excites me! It's no secret that money allows me to enter races and enroll in language classes, as well as purchase books. If we didn't get paid, how much would we accomplish? Assuming that something isn't "work" in the usual sense, how much effort would be required?
I consider myself to be a health care provider. It is true that I am an athlete, musician and polyglot, but these titles do not qualify as a response to the question "What do you do?" How many of us are willing to get up at 5am to run, or stay up until 11pm to finish writing an article, or "work" all day and yet find the time to read a story to our children? Would you be willing to put in a lot of work? People who say they wish to accomplish something but don't follow through are asked this question.