By Srikumar Rao
What can be the reason the nurse is passionate about and taking so much of efforts? And so is what can be the reason of the physician not passionate about his work?
Why is it that one person is not able to bring passion and meaning in his/her work ( from inside him/herself) while other is able to do that?
Question: I agree with you that one should find meaning in ones work, but that is impossible for me. I don't save lives like a doctor, I don't build bridges like an engineer, I don't discover laws of nature like a scientist. I just do meaningless accounting for a big company. What should I do?
Srikumar Rao: I said earlier that passion does not exist in the job, it exists in you. The same principle holds here. Meaning does not exist in the job, it exists in what YOU bring to it! I met a physician at a party recently and he was railing at how little compensation he received from a government programme he participated in. He was livid as he described how much work was involved and how he "deserved" to be paid much more. And, mind you, he was quite well off - certainly in the top 5% of all income earners. It was not apparent that he derived much meaning from his work.
At that same party I met a nurse whose compensation was a fraction of the physician's. But her face was aglow as she told me how one of "her" patients had sent her a basket of home-made snacks after being discharged from the hospital. She felt personally responsible for each of the patients she had assigned to her and found all kinds of ingenious ways to help them. And the patients reciprocated and her life was full.
It has profound meaning and when you truly understand it, you will find deep purpose in life as well.
"Caring about our work, liking it, even loving it, seems strange when we see work only as a way to make a living. But when we see work as a way to deepen and enrich all of our experience, each one of us can find this caring within our hearts, and awaken it in those around us, using every aspect of our work to learn and grow...Every kind of work can be a pleasure.
Even simple household tasks can be an opportunity to exercise and expand our caring, our effectiveness, our responsiveness. As we respond with caring and vision to all work, we develop our capacity to respond fully to all of life. Every action generates positive energy which can be shared with others. These qualities of caring and responsiveness are the greatest gift we can offer."