So today – just like yesterday – you have woken up to “go to work” and do “business as usual”. You left your warm bed to go to that desk for the usual routine. You did not need to even think about it. It is now natural to you. You did it again this morning. You left the comfort (or the discomfort) of your home to return to that same place as yesterday – the place from where you earn a living, the place of your work, the place that never doubts whether you are coming to it or not. As you know, you have been given no reason as to why you should not go there. You are unfailingly expected to go there from Monday to Friday without fail – sometimes Saturday and Sunday are not spared too.
Whether there is work to do or not, you just have to go. Very early, in fact. Through the torrential rain or the scorching sun. Even if the day’s work is all finished by midday, you must remain seated there with legs on the table (!!!) until a prior agreed upon time of the evening – sometimes going into the night – because that thing says so – the job description. And the whole time in between your coming and going, there is a complex consortium of tough orders and unseen disorders, your deeds and other people’s misdeeds, the use of equipment and abuse of authority – all interwoven intricately in the institutional fabric of the company’s daily routine. Well, days come and go and nothing is changing. Seasons come and seasons go, but you are still the same. Year in and year out, your life shows no improvement. You are like a pond of stagnant water instead of a river of ever flowing water.
However, you claim to love it anyway – the glossy identity card that hangs around your corporate neck like a fisherman’s noose. You say you love it – the organizational badge marvelously embroidered on your corporate shirt like a stamp of approval on a cow being taken to the abattoir. You seem to surely love it – the designation printed on the entrance into “your” well-furnished office like the ward number on a prison. You undoubtedly love it – that company car that never runs out of fuel. You even call it “yours”! Don’t you love it – the allowance? Certainly. Big enough to excite you but small enough to keep you there waiting for the next small cheque. You love representing your boss in that conference as he goes for an unspecified meeting at the golf course! Oh, how you love the sound of “your” organization’s name as you hiss it through your well trained lips during those introductions at the five-star hotel. You really love the solidarity of your professional colleagues, united by the common professional problem. Don’t you love it? Of course you do!
The sleek business card you hand out, graphically embossed with the company logo. Oh, you deeply love it. Yet, unfortunately, you have remained the same. Look at your life and see if you have changed at all. Your bank balance has not shifted even an inch – but you love it. Your relationships have not had value added to them at all – but you love it. Your heart still feels that deep, unexplained dissatisfaction – but it seems you still love it. You still cry about the same ills day in and day out, claiming you do not mind. You still are the same apart from your age that never goes down – but you love it, anyway. Nothing has changed apart from the comprehensively fatigued body – but you love it. Do you? There is no noticeable difference apart from hoping from one office to another, from one workplace to another.
But wait a minute: is it a work-place or a job-place? Eureka! I’ve got it. There now is the crux of the matter. Is your job your real life’s work? Could be, could be not. Simply put, a job is what you are being paid to do. Your work, on the other hand, is the reason why you were put on earth, the purpose for your existence, the WHY of your postponed death! Guess what: whenever purpose is not known, abuse can never be avoided. Whenever the reason is unclear, the pursuit is uninteresting. Whenever the rationale is vague, the direction is meandering. You now know why you feel like a bird freed from the cage at about 5pm and on Friday. Even if the cage is made up of gold, still it is a limiting sabotage.
I can hear the innocent bird crying for freedom. It wants to be released to fly – to scale the heights and land on mountain tops. I can hear it complaining every day. Complaining of overload, of stress, and of the boss’ ingratitude. Complaining of little salary, of reduced allowance, and of the workmate’s insensitivity. The bird is in the cage, in a prison, in a place of torment! Yet it seems impossible for it to fly out, impracticable to leave, unworkable to be released. After all, it is the best bird in the cage, the most experienced on the block, the most trusted of them all. So, it cannot be released. Its goodness is the reason for its bondage. Its accumulated experience is the mother of its slavery. Its professionalism is responsible for its captivity. Oh, the bird is caged.
Friend, could it be the right time for you to reconsider why you again woke up this morning to “go to work”? Could it be the right time wonder why you left your bed to go to that desk again today for the routine? Could it be the right time to ask yourself why you left your home today to go to that same place as yesterday? Could it be the right time to wonder why you must go even on a day when there is no work to be done? Could it be the right time to find reason why you must keep there up to a certain time of the evening even if the day’s work is already finished by midday? Could it be the right time to come to terms with the fact that what is detailed in your job description may be far from what your life’s work was meant to be? Could it be the right time to decide that as days come and go, you will not allow seeing no change at all? Could it be the right time to refuse to see seasons come and go, leaving you still the same? Could it be the right time to be tired of a life of no improvement?
Well, happy job today as you return to that same place you have been in for all this long with no difference in your life. May the Almighty endow you with great wisdom beyond the usual, deep understanding beyond the natural and vast knowledge beyond the ordinary so that you will be able to discern the hidden treasures, see the invisible resources, and thus do the impossible tasks hitherto.
Samuel A. Bakutana
“Inspiring transformational, exemplary and authentic leadership worldwide.”
Samuel A. Bakutana is Africa’s foremost Leadership, Business and Education Consultant; Inspirational Key-note Speaker; and Personal Development Author of 8 books. He gave 98 invigorating talks in 2012, 164 in 2013, 191 in 2014, and has already given 124 inspiring presentations ever since the year begun (January – September 03, 2015). Follow Samuel A. Bakutana on: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Samuel-A-Bakutana-Leadership-Expert-Motivational-Speaker-and-Author/563444270356475), Twitter (https://twitter.com/amutusam), LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=250332707&trk=nav_responsive_tab_profile_pic), Skillpages (http://www.skillpages.com/samuel-a.bakutana) or blog (www.excellentleading.wordpress.com). To book him for your next event, send an email now to firstname.lastname@example.org or call +256782163416 for immediate feedback. You are blessed beyond measure; so fly like an eagle!