An Alternative Approach to Work … & Life !

‘  ‘ It’s not my job ‘ , is a very popularly heard phrase in the Corporate World – which is the flip side of an otherwise very useful tool called – Job Description ( JD ) . JD helps one more clarity on his / her role responsibility & what is expected from the role . Unfortunately most use JD to have clarity on what is not listed therein, to claim as ‘ This is not my Job ‘

While above remains as the time tested , evergreen , conventional work approach , idea here is to present an alternative work ( & hence Life ) approach , for those , who it can help
This alternative approach which I discovered & am following since , works around asking 3 questions in succession , when you see anything around ( work , item , aspect , emotion , person … just about anything ) :

o Does this ( work ) need to be done ? .. if the answer is ‘Yes ‘ , go to the second question
o Can I do it ? (vis-à-vis your ability to do it ), if the answer is ‘Yes ‘ , go to next question
o Will I do it ? ( to do with your willingness & time availability )

If the answer to the 3rd / last question is ‘ Yes ‘ , just do it , regardless of your JD … doesn’t matter whose job it is

Let me explain to you with an example . You have a part time housemaid who comes everyday to wash used utensils . She is absent from last 2 days , without notice , as a result utensils to be cleaned have piled up in your kitchen sink & you are feeling short of utensils for cooking . You have two choices … wait until the day your maid shows up or get an alternative arrangement for cleaning , including yourself cleaning . Now try using my alternative work approach , ask 3 successive questions :

o Does this ( work ) need to be done ? Your answer is likely to be ‘ Yes ‘ -Go to next question
o Can I do it ? , Not being a skilled job , your answer is ‘Yes ‘ , go to next question
o Will I do it ? – Decide based on your time & mental comfort … may be you will say ‘Yes’

In reality , you would have acted much earlier than 2 days … you would understand that these 3 questions would have crossed your subconscious mind & answered in affirmative , even before you realized . This is how we work in our personal life … unfortunately when it comes to our work , we become Maids & think it is someone else’s job !

You just need to be careful while answering the 3rd question …. It is not just a matter of your time ( availability ) , but your will / your mental comfort . If you feel by doing that job ( which was not “ Your Job “ , you feel angry or you feel you are doing a favour or you feel it is a big sacrifice … & hence feel burdened , it is not worth you undertaking that task , because it is going to stress you – If you don’t have the ‘ will ‘ to do it , don’t do it . Say yes to the 3rd question only if you are free of any psychological encumbrances

I have always said that it will not be the Talent deficit , but Perspective deficit which will prove decisive difference between an Outstanding & an Ordinary, in the race at high performance end ; because “ What you do is a function of how you see “ . Conventional ( JD bound ) approach defines a Maid & the new ( JD led , but not restrictive ) approach is what Mothers choose

I am sharing this unconventional approach not to propagate its use — finally you should have your own will ! – but just to make you aware that there does exist an alternative approach beyond the conventional route ( not my job ) you know , so that you can , if you choose to use it .The paths for the two approaches are different & I can tell you that if you are the person with a burning career ambition , this new approach is for you .

If you ask me whether this approach by one will lead to his/ her exploitation . My answer is No ! , since you have a choice of saying ‘ No ‘ to the 3rd question … but if you do not feel burdened in answering Q 3 , exploitation or not … please say YES . Now imagine if we can have more & more of us taking this alternative approach , how grossly different World we will make !

What is true for Work is also true for Life & vice versa … These 3 questions – which I learnt from my Mother’s & Wife’s behavior , will help you at any stage in life !

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Sponge v/s Stone — You have a Choice

# As a person , you can either choose to be a ‘Sponge ‘ or a ‘Stone ‘ .

 

# A sponge has a tendency to absorb liquid poured on it , a stone does not . In a way a sponge is receptive to what it receives .

A sponge does not differentiate between (quality of )liquids poured on it nor does it apply selective judgement

# Its structure follows its belief system . keenness to absorb is evident though very many pores it has on its surface – so that it can absorb as much as it possibly can

# Consequently , it has a reciprocal ability to squeeze out what it does not need . In a way , a sponge can exercise  discretion to say Yes or No to whatever it receives

# These abilities of absorb & squeeze out gives a sponge an advantage to seek & choose to retain what it needs . A sponge’s life is blessed — It has a choice to enrich itself as much & as & when it wishes

 

# A stone on the other hand is stubborn , non receptive

# Its structure follows its belief system. It’s closeness to receive is evident in its solid structure with no pores

# Consequently a stone does not have an ability to squeeze out , what it does not need . Its nature disallows it the discretion to say Yes to what it may want

# A stone does not have a choice of seeking or retaining , what can enrich it ; never mind , a stone does not even wish to

# A stone is oblivious to & untouched by what can add value to it .

 

Unfortunately in real life , many of us , most of the times , act with a Stone’s attitude ; little realizing that a Sponge’s attitude gives them the power to choose what to Accept rather than Reject ( like a stone ) because of lack of ability to choose to Accept 

 

Whether to be a Sponge or a Stone is your choice , because , after all , it is your life  !