Chances are most of us would say, “of course yes”. I start my work early and end pretty late, be it at the workplace or virtually. Yes, I am hard working.
So, therefore are you hard working?
Well, I have a provocative question to ask: what is the real difference between spending long hours at work and being hard working?
As as coach who works with leaders who wish to realise their potential, I believe that the real difference between spending long hours at work and being hard working is this:
Hard to me refers to discipline. Working to me refers to the ability to persevere and not give up and keep trying.
Hard working to me is about the discipline of making time and expending energy towards things that really matter to us.
For many of us, spending long hours at work may be a necessity – we need it for economic reasons. Many of us may feel almost choice less in the matter. However, our job alone cannot define our character, can it?
What about having the discipline of going behind what we always wanted to do? It could be the habit of time for oneself, time for the family, nurturing relationships, pursing a hobby, learning a new skill, improving our health or of course changing some of our behaviours. All of these call for discipline.
Peter Drucker said, “Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work”.
Hard work to me is self directed, intrinsic and elevating and taking us forward in a way that is meaningful.
That is the way I would like to see the distinction.
What about you?