“The point of the work of your life is not what you accomplish. It’s not the body of work. It’s not how many people you touch. It’s not the books you write or the product you create. It is the effort that you put into it that matters. It’s the work, it’s the showing up that matters…
He taught me to measure myself based on my effort, not my struggle, not my resistance, not my angst but my effort, my genuine effort.”
Brooke claims that the teaching enabled her to shift her focus from what it is she is creating to the effort she is bringing forth to the creative process. In The Great Work of Your Life Stephen teaches that people feel most happy and fulfilled while meeting the challenge of their work or goals, not on completion of them. Courageous action should be measured, not the result.
He quotes Krishna ” Success or failure are not your concern… Your task is only to bring as much life force as you can muster to the execution of your dharma”.
Courageous action should be measured, not the result.
I find this teaching enormously liberating, and a powerful value to teach my children. Removing the pressure to succeed, and the anxiety of possible failure, certainly brings more enjoyment to the creative process. It probably improves the likelihood of success too – the creative juices can flow uninhibited and the added pleasure in the process may fuel a greater commitment. For children it must be hugely reassuring to believe that it is not important how good they are at something so long as they make an honest effort. The way I see it is that sometimes the effort required is our very best, and at other times that will be pushing beyond our fear to try something or to simply show up.
There are sooooo many gems within Brooke’s Lessons from Stephen Cope podcast, so check out the full episode over at The Life Coach School. The transcript is also available for download.I hope you enjoy.