Crafting a Calling

May 4th, 2011

Crafting a CallingFrom the book of Martin Seligman: Authentic Happiness

He recounted visiting a good friend in hospital when an orderly came into the room. The man proceeded to take out pictures from his bag and fix them to the wall, beyond the foot of the patient’s bed. Seligman asked him what he was doing. “My job? I’m an orderly on this floor,” he answered. “But I bring in new prints and photos every week. You see, I’m responsible for the health of all these patients. Take Mr. Miller here. He hasn’t woken up since they brought him in, but when he does, I want to make sure he sees beautiful things right away.”

This hospital orderly, concluded Seligman, “did not define his work as the emptying of bedpans or the swabbing, but as protecting the health of his patients and procuring objects to fill this difficult time of their lives with beauty. He may have held a lowly job, but he crafted it into a high calling.”

Can You Make Your Work More Like a Calling?


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