….that’s probably the best way to define Emotional labour. It is the labour of keeping yourself in the ring and of convincing yourself enough to keep the grind going. It is somewhere between the borderline of bliss and pain – it hurts you so much that you want to give in but at the same time, the joy of possibility, keeps you going.
You know, it is easy to keep your hand busy on a gig that is a sure thing. If you are on a 9 to 5, you merely need to show up every day and to do again, what you did yesterday…at best, you do it more efficiently or do the same thing in an entirely new way. But, when you have to create something – set up a new business, invent a product, write a book, start a movement, or make any form of change; then you have to do this labour. It is not the same thing as mental labour, and this one isn’t as difficult. Emotional labour demands a different kind of education – it demands courage, resilience, empathy, and faith. You will have to get used to the fear and the risk and take action, not because of them but in spite of them. That’s how change makers make change – all inventors and innovators. They understand clearly that everything we ever desire in life, is usually on the other side of our fear. The fear is the chasm, it’s the void and you will be required to make a dreadful leap to get to the other side. Italians have a word for this and it’s called, _Salto Mortale_ – a leap in the void.
When we all get comfortable in doing the work that might not work, that’s when we actually get to find out what works. It is the language of innovation.
Whatever it is you do, I hope you also get to take the leap.