So, building on yesterdays post about asking the right questions, I decided to take an actionable example – how many of you today will say ‘TGIF!” (Thank God it’s Friday). Not that there’s anything wrong with being excited for the weekend – perhaps you just need a long overdue Facebook status update – the question is, however – are you more excited that the weekend is beginning, or that the week is over? Perhaps if it is the later, you should re-examine why you are doing what has made you resent the week, after all you are giving it your most precious and valuable asset – your time.
Put bluntly – TGIF is a self admittance that you did not enjoy whatever it is you were doing during the week. It’s another way of saying ‘it’s finally over!’ Let’s take a moment for that to set in – how can one truly be happy if you are happiest only when the week is over. When you spend 5 out of 7 days waiting for the moment to come when you can say, ‘thank god it’s Friday’. Admittedly, we all have those weeks that really drain us – and it’s okay to have those once in a while, however, the issue arises when its TGIF every Friday.
Here’s a rhetorical question: how many people do you think experienced success (both monetarily and personally) in their careers by looking forward to the end of every week? My guess would be very few. Do you think Warren Buffet throws out his notes Friday afternoon and walks out of the office shouting ‘TGIF!’? Or on the other end of the spectrum, can you picture Nelson Mandela sitting back in his chair, saying ‘TGIF’? I would argue that when you find something you are truly passionate about – something you enjoy, and believe in (and let’s be honest, you will never enjoy 100% of your job, there is always something to deal with), then Friday won’t be such a big deal to you – if anything, it will be an interruption in your journey, something that at times you will purposefully avoid, working through the weekend.
So then how do you gauge the danger of TGIF? I think it’s like anything – it depends on the commonalty of the symptom. If you find yourself with the occasional TGIF case, then rest easy – you are probably okay (but you could still be better!). However, if you’re a chronic sufferer from TGIF syndrome, then chances are you need to make a change in your life. I don’t know everyone’s personal story – their flexibility to make a change in their professional life, etc., but this is most likely when it will be the easiest – if you are in your 20’s like me – no mortgage, no kids, no family, maybe some student debt.
I speak from experience – I had a couple professional experiences that degraded into a weekly repetition of TGIF’s. I knew then and there that the industry I was working in at the time was not for me, and I gave it up, moved on, and have never looked back. The most dangerous thing is taking risk, but as one of my favourite quotes says – you can’t steal second with your foot on first.
As with anything, is there an equal, positive offset to TGIF? I think so, it’s a new term I am going to share with you – TGIM (Thank God It’s Monday). That’s right; you are so excited for what you are going to accomplish this week – both personally and professionally – that you are actually excited for the week to begin. You couldn’t get to sleep Sunday night because of all the things you are going to get done, and your facebook status announced it to the world: TGIM
Here is the crux of this entire post (you could have skipped everything above and just read this paragraph, sorry!). When you find something that you are passionate about, enjoy, and take pleasure in, you will rarely ever use the term; TGIF. You will be so enthralled in your work and progress, the thought won’t cross your mind. So, I ask that if you are repetitively looking forward to the end of the week – perhaps it’s time to re-examine your professional career choices and the future that they hold for you.
So, in closing, here is a question for you – the reader. What gets your more excited, Monday or Friday? Answer that question, and better understand the state of your professional career and life.