I’m a terrible liar in one particular area.
I rarely count the preparation before a job as part of the job.
If you’ve ever painted a room, you know that you can’t just pick up a can of paint and start painting (even if you don’t dither, hem-and-haw, procrastinate, and agonize over the first step: finding the ‘right’ color…)
You’ve got to move furniture, take down pictures, mask doorways and molding, cover the floor with newspaper (if you’re also painting the ceiling), climb ladders, wash the walls, clear away cobwebs…in my experience, all these activities take at LEAST as much time as the actual painting. If I paint (and I rarely do anymore) I’ve learned to at least give myself time credit for doing all this.
And many times, you have to do a base coat and two finish coats. Which means the job can easily turn into a multi-day affair. And it means taking time to wash the brushes and containers in between paintings.
I had a friend in graduate school for film directing who did something similar with time. She would tell me all the school-oriented things she planned to do in one weekend-and many of them involved other people on her student film crew. I knew just enough to know that most of what she planned was simply impossible to finish in the time she had allotted. And when I’d query her about it, she’d simply brush away those concerns. (And she never got as much done as she thought she would…)
When I was making sales calls, I never considered researching who to call as part of the actual work.
My writing teacher recently said that our society doesn’t consider thinking part of writing-yet she knows that simply having quiet time is essential to her work.
Here’s the theme: preparation is part of the job. It’s all real work. Give yourself credit for it.
The definition of work is: activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a purpose or result.
May we pursue our paths, working towards our goals, and giving ourselves credit for everything we do to achieve results,