By Samantha McKenzie
There’s a formula in physics that states force multiplied by distance equals work.
For something to be labeled “work,” it has to have both of these factors. Simply put, we have to DO something, and that something has to MOVE from one point to another. Merely participating in lots of activities and looking really busy isn’t enough.
We are that force. How many of us spend all of our waking hours doing something? We are high-powered multi-taskers who take advantage of daybreak. We spend a lot of time exerting energy, pushing, and forcing at all of life’s intervals – at work, at home and even in relationships. Sometimes, all we have to show for it is sheer exhaustion.
On the contrary, we spend little to no time assessing how much distance we’ve made. Did we move the needle? What do we have to show for it? Did we get what we set out to accomplish? If the answer is yes to these questions, then you can count your efforts as real work. Our relationships should grow from year to year. Our results at work should lead to a brighter career. That do-it-yourself project should end…successfully.
Force x Distance = Work.
We can see the distance just ahead. Under this formula, we can measure our labor and increase our successes. This is yet another opportunity to make sure that daily “elbow grease” that we give away so freely actually matriculates into something we desire.
Real, in living color, tangible, value-added work.
There are many ways to ensure that we are investing our energy in the right places. Set timelines. Use checklists. Create short and long term goals. Complete tasks. As my friend Dawn always recommends, use vision boards and find someone to hold you accountable. Read books that point to your path. Measuring our distance benefits us in two ways: 1) it lets us take in small successes which builds the confidence we need to keep going and, 2) it allows us to tweak our plans when necessary and implement workarounds.
The real work lies ahead. Don’t release any more energy without making the distance count. Follow the formula.