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This is a guest submission from Peter Mis from LivingHalf Full.com

How did I end my grind?

I took my head out of my ass.

Amazing what I was now able to see.

How The Hell Did I End Up Here?

cubicle1

I spend my days in a box. Inside this 42 square foot box is a desk, a chair, a computer, and a phone. And let’s not forget about the waste basket. I believe the more common name for a box like this is a cubicle.

It wasn’t always this way. For the vast majority of my working life, though, my office had four wheels, a windshield, power leather seats, cup holders and satellite radio. I made my living on the road, logging over 1 million miles traversing the six New England states.

For the most part, my schedule was mine to set. The work always got done and I had the say as to when it got done.

Times change. Industries consolidate. And when they do it often means you’ll be doing some lifestyle and career restructuring as well.

Now the only time I’m looking out my windshield is when I’m driving the office, my destination a cubicle, to sit behind something I’ve never had before.

A desk.

I will admit it was quite the transition, this cubicle thing. The view of the pizza shop and coin laundry from my one window never changes. There is a starting time and an ending time. There is a clock which many people tend to watch and apparently it just doesn’t go fast enough.

Suddenly I’ve been introduced to such radical ideas such as vacation days, sick days, and personal days. Now I understood why people offer their thanks to God because it’s Friday.

How the hell did I end up in this situation?

Sometimes life puts you into situations to teach you the things you need to learn. Even if that place is a cubicle.

Was I frustrated? Very much so. I went from controlling my own time and activities to having my time and activities very much controlled. The repetitive nature of one day looking like every other day became rather demoralizing, and for the first time in two decades work felt like work.

Work became a grind.

Don’t get me wrong. I work for two amazingly wonderful people, the most compassionate people I’ve ever worked with. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity they’ve given me and their support along the way. But they didn’t create the grind.

I did.

In fact, we are the only ones who can create a grind.

Freedom To Choose

freedom-of-choice

The grind is a mindset, nothing more than how we may choose to label any situation we find ourselves in. In any given moment, life is what life is. We are the ones with the labels and judgments, free to define the moments and situations which make up our lives any way we want to.

I’ve come to appreciate those moments I slap the “grind” label on my life. A blessing in its own perverse disguise. Why? Because when life starts feeling like a grind, I take that as a clue to take a closer look at exactly what’s going on in my head.

Is my current situation really mundane, repetitive, and unfulfilling? Or have I allowed my emotional interpretation of my current situation to get the better of me, filling me with frustration and hostility and a burning desire to scream?

Nothing ever gets better by simply yelling at the box you find yourself stuck in.

Because you’re never really stuck.

You only think you are.

At this very moment we are all exactly where we are supposed to be. Life understands what we need to understand and will keep us where we need to be until we do.

My radical career change and the subsequent change in how and where my working hours are spent did, at times, get the better of me. It impacted my performance and more importantly my overall happiness. But the real grind wasn’t my job; rather, it was how I decided to label the situation.

Sometimes you can’t change the box you’re in. But you can always change what it is you choose to see.

Regaining The Power

I've Got the Power

Once I changed my view of my current situation, the current situation no longer had the power over me it once had. The grind was a grind no more. All I now see is the opportunity that has always been right in front of me.

Yes, all jobs can at times feel mundane, repetitive, and unfulfilling. That’s why they call it work. Even when I was on the road and my time was my own, I would often find something to grind about.

The lesson I needed to learn, and I would suggest most people also need to learn, is to rise above the habitually negative emotional responses we instinctively spit out when life isn’t going the way we believe it should be and to craft a wiser, more proactive response to get us closer to where it is we really want to be.

I’m not suggesting adopting a “just deal with it” mindset. Nor am I calling for anyone to simply accept where they are and settle for some sort of adequate life. That’s not why any of us are here.

We all have more options than we realize to create the life of our dreams. But 90% of life is how you respond to the situations you find yourself in. Your response is always your choice, and your choice is always founded upon what it is you choose to see.

Choose wisely.

I know what the grind feels like. It’s highly volatile, fraught with emotional frustration. At times you feel like a victim, justified in your misery. No one does their best work under these conditions and your best and most important work is to become all you’ve been created to become.

The grind can serve as a clue of a misalignment with your purpose, or it can simply be a sign you need to do a better job of understanding exactly what life has placed in front of you. Either way, action is required. The grind has a great deal to teach you if you’re willing to see the grind for the unlikely teacher it is.

It’s one of life’s most important lessons to learn if you ever hope to end your grind and become what God created you to become.

So, what do you see in front of you?

Change your view.

It will change your life.

 

About Peter

Peter Mis is the creator and blogger for LivingHalfFull.com, committed to reminding everyone of the greatness residing within them and challenging everyone to fully become all they were created to become.

In 2008, while sitting in Boston traffic listening to one negative news story after another, Peter knew the world needed more voices of optimism and hope and LivingHalfFull.com was born. Follow Peter on Twitter @PeterMis or on Facebook.

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