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What you "have" to do vs. What you "get" to do

Words shape our worlds - can changing one word shift our mindset and happiness?

Have vs. Get

If you find yourself working on a project from a tropical, sunny destination where partiers fill the streets, and drunken laughs fill the coffee shop at 10 am (as I did about six months ago) - you may wind up dejectedly sighing about how you “have to” work while everyone plays.

But what if you changed one word of that sentence and shifted your entire outlook?

What if you said - “Wow, I get to work from this gorgeous, sunny place where laughter and joy are waiting for me when I'm ready."

Because we could work anywhere - at a desk in a building that we don’t like, in a cubicle, in a factory, in a loud building with fluorescent lights that hurt our eyes, in a room with no windows.

We already know that being in nature is good for our wellbeing. And now new research (like the field of neuroaesthetics which studies how the brain responds to beauty and art) is showing us how design, space, and aesthetics impact our health, our mood, and our creativity - making the ability to hand-pick your workspace an incredible privilege.

Imagine using science to design your workspace so that you can derive the maximum amount of peace, creativity, and wellness from it - the innovation and passion would be unparalleled.

Once you transcend the urge to dance on the beach, getting to work from a vacation destination (or any other desirable place) becomes a privilege. You have a built-in incentive to work as efficiently as possible so you can go swim or snorkel. You get to feel the sun on your face and the breeze in your hair while you work on something meaningful. You’re happier - and (as a bonus) because you're happier, more refreshed and more creative, you work better.

And it’s not just about work.

How else can we reframe the obligations that we “have” to do and think of them as privileges that we get to do?

  • Do you have to clean your apartment or do you get  to cleanse and reset the atmosphere in your home?
  • Do you have to go to the gym or do you get  to spend dedicated time nourishing and moving your body in a dedicated space for wellness?
  • Do you have to finish this class or do you get  to learn something new and expand your mind?

Once I started saying “I get to” instead of “I have to” - my happiness and gratitude skyrocketed.

I get to have it all by creating in a space where I also spend meaningful leisure time - which means I’m never looking for a vacation or feeling the need for an escape.

Try changing just one word.

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