You’ve got to be good at your job before you can enjoy the rest of your life. Think about this quote and see if it rings true or not. This is primarily a guy thing and may or may not necessarily be true for ladies. For a man, so much of who he is, is wrapped up in what he does. If you look at the happiest retired men, you will find a commonality that they were good at their job before they retired. It doesn’t matter what the job was but what does matter, is how they did it.
One of the happiest retired men I know is my next-door neighbor. He was the chief pilot for large fortune 500 company for 25 years and flew to over 167 countries in his career. Before that he was an Air Force Pilot back when they used to fly around with live weapons on board in case they were called into action. Think about what a stressful job that must have been. He is 84 buts looks 64 and is very engaged in life today and in my opinion, his happiness comes in large part because he was fulfilled in his job when he was working. I have friends that were in all manner of work from a garbage company, hotels, retail development to doctors. If asked, they would all tell you that one key to moving on to a happy life is being fulfilled and doing well in their work. As a contrast, I know one gentlemen that retired from his work having done as little as he could get by with and never really giving his best. He simply put in his time and retired but it left a big hole in him that was never filled. Therefore, his retirement years have not been happy and fulfilled because deep within himself, he knows he didn’t do his best.
If we think about it, we all know this is true because we all know someone who has moved from one job to another hoping the next job will be better. It is like the old saying “wherever I go, there I am.” We also all know people who cannot enjoy a vacation because they didn’t leave their work caught up and in order. The greatest vacations are when you work hard up to the vacation so that you can relieve your mind of work while you are on vacation.
I think as you age, it becomes more important to finish well. To know you gave it your best. As you read this blog, just know it is important to do your best and try as hard as you can. It also helps you handle your emotions when you don’t get the job, promotion or the sale if you know you did your best. The hardest working person I ever met was my father in-law. He owned a fence company and he worked and sold harder than anyone I ever knew. He loved to fish, travel and camp and I remember many times being with him on vacation or fishing and he worked as hard at enjoying those times as he did when he was at work. I believe the way he worked helped him enjoy time when he was away from work.
So, in summary, give work your best effort because it will help you be engaged and enjoy all the other times in your life. KT