I spend a lot of time in my car – 10 hours a week just for my commute – and have lots of time to think.
Lately I’ve been thinking about all of the activities/projects/passions/roles that occupy my life – being a father, husband, fundraiser, employee, social entrepreneur, community builder, podcaster, runner (when I’m not injured), newbie cyclist, musician, worship leader, team member, brother, son, friend – just to name a few. I’ve noticed – and this for a while now – that I seem to keep all of those things compartmentalized.
What do I mean by that?
It’s simple, when I’m at work I expend a considerable amount of time suppressing the parts of me that are not related to my ‘day job.’ When I’m in conversation with someone for my podcast, I tend to keep the other parts of who I am out of the conversation.
You get the idea … every role, project or passion has its place and they shouldn’t interfere with each other. I’ve tried to convince myself that in order to be present and successful in that moment, I need to play the role that is called for in that moment .
All This Time, I’ve Been Wrong
I mentioned in a post last week that I’ve been reading Jeff Goin’s “The Art of Work.” The deeper I get in his book, it’s apparent that my approach is completely wrong. In chapter six, Goins introduces the concept of the “portfolio life.” He references a conversation with his friend Keith who describes a portfolio life by saying, “you aren’t just a writer (speaking about Goins) or a husband or a dad. You are all of those things, and you need to embrace them.”
Later in the same chapter, Goins continues by saying that
the idea of a portfolio life is that instead of thinking about your work as monolithic activity, what if you chose to see it as the complex group of interests, passions and activities it is.
I’m beginning to think that this not only applies to work but it applies to us as individuals.
And Then It All Made Sense
I am at my best (and feel my best) when I bring all of me to the role, passion or activity I’m engaged in. Being a father, husband, fundraiser, community builder, podcaster, coffee enthusiast – all of these things make me who I am. When I try to compartmentalized these things, I’m not living a life in session or, as Jeff Goins calls it, a portfolio life.
Maybe this is what’s been nagging at me for the past little while. Bringing all of me to everything that I do is what I’m called to do. It’s what we’re all called to do.
Don’t make the same mistake I’m been making, bring all of you to all you do! If we – if I – do this, I think we’ll all be a to closer to living a life in session!
Be well and make it a great day!