One big thing I’ve realized as my life has shifted so dramatically in the last few weeks is that you must believe in what you are doing. You need to believe in your work.
Now, there are two ways to approach this. One is sane, it has respect for family, friends, and general reality. It is the type where if the job needs to be done, and you are the person you needs to do it (or above the person who needs to do it) then you need to take the responsibility to get it done.
Remember, your friends and family need you to do your job as much as the organization you work for needs to have it done. If you can’t do it, for any reason, then you need to go look for another job you can do to support those that matter most. Unless, of course, you are one of those lucky sons-of-guns that wins the lottery either at life or the literal lottery.
It’s a funny thing, because many work/business/self-help books say you need to work in a job that you love. I think that’s just a twisted way of saying, you need to work in a job that you can provide the level and quality of work necessary to provide real ROI. If you are happy in the job you are in, you are more likely to put in the 100% of the hours that you work producing a fantastic output and giving back to the team what they need to move forward.
If you are miserable about the work, you are likely not only not giving 100%, but you are also costing the team in moral issues.
One way to be considerably less miserable is to believe in your work. Everyone who works with me I can see real possibilities beyond simply hammering out another form, or building a bureaucracy.
Believe in your work. Believe it will matter if you work hard enough at it.
If you can’t do that… well… don’t be an entrepreneur or work for a startup. 😛