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Letting Go of the Stress of Measuring | Part 2


Untrack: Another Way to Work and Live

So how do you work and live if you’re not tracking and measuring?

Let’s take the example of a mother or father — do we measure all the activities we do as parents, so we are motivated to improve and keep doing it? Do we measure:
  • Hugs given
  • Time spent reading to kids
  • Time spent preparing meals for them
  • Fixing their booboos
  • Taking them to the playground or park
  • Playing catch with them
  • Helping them shower or get dressed
  • Teaching them a new skill
  • Snuggling or lazing around together
And so on. No, we just do all of that and more. Why? 

How is it possible to do all of that without the motivation of tracking?
It’s simple: we do those things because we love them, and we love our kids.

We are also motivated to learn more about being parents, to see if there are better ways of doing things, not by the measuring and tracking, but because we love being parents and want to be good parents. No tracking needed.

What about running? Can’t we run for the joy of it? Aren’t we motivated to do it because we love ourselves? And who cares if we run more miles or not? That’s an arbitrary goal that really means nothing. Just run because it’s super fun, for the enjoyment of nature and great views, for the simple but boundless pleasure of a conversation with someone you love.

What about work? Are we going to all of a sudden stop doing anything because it’s not measured? I say no.

I’ve been working for a little while now without tracking anything, and lo and behold, my work goes on. I do it because it gives me joy. I do it because I love all of you, my dear readers, and would keep doing it without pay and even if whatever numbers I decided to measure went down the tubes and into the netherworld. That’s why we do things, not because we want numbers to get better. The numbers are meaningless, arbitrary, limiting, narrow, and without heart.

Do for the love of doing, for the love of others. That’s unmeasurable, and profoundly life changing.

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Related article:

Letting Go of the Stress of Measuring | Part 1

 
 Post written by Leo Babauta.