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What's most important in life?



The Clean Desk Fantasy � AKA �When All My Work is Done I�ll�� 

by Life & Career Coach, Debby Parkinson, PCC

Today is the first official day of summer in the top half of the world and that means Spring has also officially passed us by.  Traditionally that means you spent a little time �spring cleaning� something, right?   Usually, it�s closets or your living space or garage (if you�re lucky enough to even have one) or some part of it . But for most of us who spend time working at a desk, every day can feel like our desk needs to be spring cleaned!

We�ve all heard the phrase, �A messy desk is the sign of a genius,� and personally, I sure hope that�s true!  But there is also such a thing as, �within reason�. So, if you are one of those people who hasn�t seen the top of your desk since Clinton saw Monica on top of his, you might want to reconsider your definition of genius, at least a little bit. However, that�s a discussion for another day. Until then, be kind to your messy desk and give it a little fresh air now and then. Dare to throw away more than feels comfy. I guarantee you, something terrific will come into your life and take its place.

Then there are those who are obsessed with the idea that their desk must always be totally clean, neat and complete at the end of every day. To me, this doesn�t seem to define �within reason� or �genius�. It defines �foolish� and �unrealistic� because the need for such perfection is more like a compulsion, or chasing a fantasy where ALL work is always ALL done. Work �all done�? Does that ever truly happen in real life? In your life? Certainly not in mine!

Then there are those of you out there who feel so overly responsible for the world, you feel compelled to complete every piece of work that lands on your desk. Why do you assume all work that falls on your desk must be done by you? Could it be you�ve taught people to expect it from you? Perhaps someone else needs to step up to the plate and your only responsibility is to afford them the chance? Perhaps you would benefit and clear some of your desk by merely letting go of control? Among my Top 10 most useful phrases, passed on to me by my favorite mentors is the phrase, �Do It, Delegate It, or Dump It!� That means you have options and �Yea!� for that! Everything that lands on your desk doesn�t have to be a �Do It�. Be open to the other two choices, �Delegate It� or �Dump It�, but DO CHOOSE! Indecision creates back log and often results in decisions we would not have chosen.

So what have we got here? We have the messy desk people and the clean desk people. Both are trying to be productive and happy while operating in one extreme or another. Some people even battling phobias over fear of completing things and some over fear of not completing things. Both afraid of being judged. Also a fascinating topic for another day; but may I suggest a topic for discussion with a licensed therapist?  IMMEDIATELY!!!  Life is simply too short to let anything control you!

The reason I call �Clean Desk� a fantasy is because it will never be true. You will never have a clean desk that stays clean. The truth is, no matter how much work you complete, there will always be more. If there weren�t more work, you would no longer have a job, a business or a career.   Life is work and life is often messy.  Get used to it!

And we must remember there is joyful, fulfilling living to be done too. It�s all about that over used term, �balance�. But all balance asks us is to find a happy medium. Our minds, body and spirit need to work AND play equally. They both refuel us, each in their own way.

Whether you prefer a messy desk or a tidy one, obsessing about work is just plain bad for you. It drains you mentally, physically and spiritually and is detrimental to your health, your relationships, your happiness and in a bizarre yet perfect way, even detrimental to the quality of the very work you�re obsessing about!

I challenge you to redefine your life and priorities. Life is not a series of results, it is the journey towards the result. So, enjoy the process and let go of the result. Release the need for instant gratification and seek pleasure in the doing. Because when you are forever chasing the end result, not only will it elude you, you will be missing life in the present. That means you�re missing people moments, funny moments, and precious moments � the very moments that link together to create a happy and fulfilling life. And isn�t that what we all want,  happiness and fulfillment that lasts vs. the fleeting happiness of,  �Ah. I�m finally done!� ??? Yuk!!!

Having more work to do will always be a fact of life. Embrace it! And perhaps take to heart another piece of wisdom passed on to me by my mentors. �Work Hard and Play Hard, Equally.� Because honestly, the truth is when the day comes where there will really nothing left to do, you�ll be dead!  And for all we know, not even then!? HA!  May you find the joy in every task and every moment.

Focus less on the �Do It� and more on the �Delegate It or Dump It� this month and see what it does for your desk and your life!


You may "forward", copy, or distribute L.I.P.S. Wisdom as long as it is copied IN ITS ENTIRETY with this copyright notice and full information about contacting the author attached. If you wish to use L.I.P.S. Wisdom in any other format, contact and full permission of the author is required and/or if you wish to subscribe to L.I.P.S. Wisdom, simply email the author, Debby Parkinson, at: debby@debbyparkinson.com or by calling 1-800-578-5593.  Debby also offers a FREE � NO OBLIGATION sample coaching session to those who would like to inquire about coaching by her.


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