“It was easier when I was making cabinets.”
“Why, what was different?”
“At the end of the day, I could see and feel my progress. Now I just deal with people and it is hard to know if I accomplished anything.”
As I reflect on my own work. I can relate.
A lot of what we do is less measurable, less tangible.
It is certainly easier when you make something. It wasn’t there before. You built it. It now exists. You can see it.
Ideas, thoughts, managing, leading are harder to quantify.
But we are still making.
Creating and expanding organizations.
“Maybe it would be easier to ask yourself a simple question at the end of the day: What Cabinets Did I Make Today?”
“What do you mean?”
“Think about your work now in terms of cabinets because that is where you started. Take your interactions with customers, sales gained, estimates written, and turn then into cabinets.”
“You are a little weird.”
“Yeah I know, but keep tracking. This will tie your current work to the familiar and fulfilling work that you keep longing to do again.”
“I can try. So when I complete four estimates in a day, that may be a cabinet? Instead of not feeling like I am making progress, I can look at that pile of paper, and see a cabinet?”
“Yes, making cabinets out of your current work.”
Maybe that is how we can all calibrate our time, our effort. Think about our work in terms that are familiar and comfortable. A lot of our lives can feel like spinning our wheels instead of Making Cabinets.
What Cabinets are you making?
What [insert your cool creative thing here] have you built today?
Go. Make a difference. Make Cabinets.