early on in my career, i used to get really bent out of shape when i felt the work i was putting in was in vain. but then i would get extremely frustrated with myself for even entertaining the idea that i needed affirmation to feel valuable. i hate the concept of affirmation because it blurs the motivation, and the drive behind hard work shifts from something purposeful like advancement, personally or holistically, to just wanting recognition. i understand the frustration of feeling like your hard work goes unnoticed, but these days i’m becomingly increasingly aware that that’s simply a waste of your attention units.
here’s why: i believe that genuine hard work will not go unobserved. at some point, the people in charge (they) – and if you are in charge, then your competition – will notice the diligence, either in the results or the process. there’s a catch, though. it has to be honest work. it’s pretty easy to tell the difference between someone who is working for results and someone who is working for acknowledgement. i’ve seen both. i’ve been both. the former is always better.
the other day, out of nowhere, a coworker let me know that he sees it. he called them the “lonely hours.” he said he sees the “lonely hours” i put in and that years from now i will be grateful that i put in that work. to me, it was just another day in my routine, chopping away, putting in the same work that i always do, disregarding who was there to witness it or otherwise. while this guy won’t directly have an effect on my overall success, i can to assume that if he notices it, then others do too. i’m able to provide this input because he decided to bring this up to me, but had he decided not to voice his observations to me, i still would have been working and he still would have seen it. so i’m telling you that they see it. though not everyone will make it known, just know in the back of your mind that “they” do indeed notice.
keep putting in that honest work and they will notice.