Don’t Fix People; Fit People

Recently my administrative assistant (also my wife) was on a holiday in Europe with our daughter. In her absence, I’ve been attempting to keep up with all of the administrative demands in the business and at the same time run the business. Big mistake – to not get administrative support during this time.

I learned years ago that if you don’t have an administrative assistant, you are one. I’ve been an administrative assistant for the past two weeks, and I’ve been a lousy one. And I’m exhausted. But I’m not exhausted from the hard work. In fact, it has been extremely good for me to appreciate the load that Val carries. And I’m not afraid of hard work. But I’m exhausted because I was attempting to take on work that is not within my sphere of unique capabilities. Some people are actually meant to be in the role of administrative assistant. But, not me.

Now that Val is back home, I’ve taken some time to reflect on the experience. With so many people exhausted these days in their work, it makes me think. Why? Because we don’t have balance in our lives? Because we are working too hard? Because we need to work less? If you are exhausted, my hunch is that it’s because there is some misalignment going on. You are doing too much work that is energy-consuming for you, rather than energy-giving. It’s not about hard work, it’s about not being aligned.

Take an inventory of where you are spending your time and it’s effect on your energy level. Be honest with yourself. If I had a performance review by a boss during the past two weeks, I would have failed miserably. I would have been marked as incompetent, in need of some “motivation” and “fixing.” I know that I didn’t need to be “fixed” during the past two weeks. What I needed to do instead was delegate the administrative work and to stick with what I do best.

Don’t fix people; fit people.