Newsletter

Good Work—Edition Nº 16

A hand-curated newsletter devoted to exploring how we choose to spend the 90,000 hours that will make up our careers.
Andy Sparks
▪︎ 7 minutes read time

🎶 Can I Kick It? by A Tribe Called Quest

Our brave hero prepares to face the world of work.

Weekends don't count unless you spend them doing something completely pointless.Bill Watterson*

There’s this perverted idea that taking time to rest is an indulgence, like catching our breath over the weekend is the equivalent of eating a swimming pool of Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia. For many of us, our work takes on the personality of a jealous and territorial lover. One day you wake up, hungover from a fight with work the night before, power cords flung around the room, fingers stained with the dregs of coffee we sucked through the filters in the trash, realizing you’ve missed any depth of life outside your codependent relationship with work. I say all of this as someone who loves their work. Each Friday, I head out to meet my best friend in the world for a few too many beers and talk about… what else? My relationship. Work.

But this weekend is a long weekend. It’s Memorial Day Weekend in The United States. If you’re anything like me, you’re thinking about working on Monday. You see a clear schedule and a backlog a mile wide or twenty thousand leagues deep. There’s so much to do. There are people depending on us. There’s a career that needs to be nurtured. And all of that is true. But this weekend, I hope you won’t work on Monday. I hope you step back, call a friend who you’ve lost touch with, sit in that park you always walk past, read that book that’s sat on your shelf, tell your partner that thing you’ve been thinking about, or book that trip you’ve been dreaming of.

Whether you love your work or you look at email like a ball and chain, just remember that you exist outside of this relationship, and it’s never too late to learn more about who you are beyond and before your work. I hope you take your plans for working on Monday and do what the writers of Game of Thrones should have done with this last season’s script: crumple ‘em up and say, “Not today.”

This Week

Work

  • [5m] As a long-time follower of the debate between, “you must work yourself to death to succeed” and “you can work 40 hours a week and be successful and happy,” I was thrilled to come across “Work As Hard As You Can,” by Naval Ravikant this week. It was the healthy and realistic take I’ve been looking for, and I hope you enjoy it.
  • [5m] It’s so easy to feel crazy at work, especially when you’re managing people. “How to Break the Vicious Cycle of Reactive Management,” by Jason Evanish includes a few easy-to-implement pointers on how to move from reactive to proactive.

Open Source

Stories

That’s Good Work for this week. Looking forward to what’s next.

Andy and the Holloway Team

Good Work is written and curated by Andy Sparks, Courtney Nash, Dmitriy Kharchenko, Hope Hackett, Joshua Levy, and Rachel Jepsen.

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