Hands up who else has ever felt a sense of dread or panic, when faced with the age old question, ‘what do you do?‘ Those four bland words usually uttered pretty early on in an attempt to get to know somebody. The question almost always equates to a description of what we do for work; how we earn our money. I feel lucky to be able to say these days that I’m in a job that I quite enjoy, however it hasn’t always been this way. I have also experienced the shudder run down my unemployed spine when faced with this question.
The emphasis on what we ‘do’ reflects the value that society places on our career, our role, our job. And yet this question can neglect so much of who we are. It often doesn’t make space for our passions, beliefs or ideas (unless of course, we are one of the lucky people who have managed to turn their passion into their work). It also fails to account for all the other ways in which we may contribute to the world, our families, communities and our selves. I believe the richness of our lives, and the journey of creating a meaningful life comes from embracing all of these aspects of who we are. I also believe that this is fundamental to managing our mental health.
When I first set this site up over a year ago, my intention was for it to be a place to share my own journey of managing my mental health and creating a meaningful life. I would also love to provide a space to celebrate and share others’ journeys too.
The name, ‘the day’s work’ comes from the old French translation of the word ‘journey‘. Work can be defined as, ‘an activity involving physical or mental effort, done in order to achieve a result.‘ A journey could therefore be seen as an accumulation of our daily efforts. I adopted the phrase for the name of this site because for me it seems to unite the efforts that make up our days, and the days that accumulate to form our journeys and thus create our lives.
Anybody that has faced mental health challenges (or life challenges for that matter) will know that there are some days, when just surviving takes up an entire day’s work. And then there are the days when this becomes a smaller part of the day’s work, and we find space and energy for other things. These are both important, for this is the journey.
If you are interested in sharing your story and becoming an advocate for the day’s work, I would LOVE to hear from you. Please get in touch using the contact form. What is your day’s work? How are you creating meaning in your life? What are your passions and your contributions to the world?
Join me in advocating for all of the things that make a person and create a life. Lets expand our view beyond what we do as a job, to take in all that we are and all that we do, so that the next time we are faced with those four bland words…perhaps we can reach for a richer answer…