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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Thriving from College to Career

Very recently I've learned about Arianna Huffington's Third Metric movement. If you haven't yet heard about this movement you may have heard the word "THRIVE" going around a lot, and this word sums up most of what Arianna's movement is about. Too often we get caught up in our work, our jobs, the daily little nuances in our lives and forget to really be in the moments. We push harder, work longer, and run faster just to reach the top. It's not a bad thing to want to be reach the top but the way we are going about it is burning us out before we even get there, and that is a bad thing.

The Third Metric movement is about taking the time out of our days to key into our inner-self and check on our wellbeing. If you're not a spiritual person (not in the religious sense, but in the soul-focused sense) then this can all seem quite hogwash. But let's take a beat and think about work, under today's society really means. 

Work means:

  1. Waking up early and working AT LEAST 8 hours (typically more)
  2. Checking e-mail constantly
  3. Lists of tasks (all work-related) running through the mind like a never ending receipt at the check-out counter
  4. At least 4 cups of coffee just to keep the energy up
  5. Having Friday be the most exciting day of the week so you can do what you really want on the weekend
  6. Not being happy when Sunday comes to a close
  7. Hating Monday's
  8. Tight, suffocating work attire
  9. Fake smiles, fake joy, and fake excitement
  10. Consistent exhaustion from lack of sleep
When you look at this list you can understand why any college graduate, like myself, would want to stay in college forever and never get a grown-up job. Being a person who is continuously joyful, loves passionate conversation, and has a internal demand for 8 hours of sleep, I hated the thought of going into the working environment. The thought of being surrounded by drone zombies all week wasting away their lives until Friday seemed depressing at best, and life-crushing at worst. The truth is, we spend most of our lives at work than anywhere else and with anyone else in our lives, so we must be able to find our joy there too, not just an income. And this, right here, is why I'm so excited for Arianna Huffington's Third Metric movement. 

There are four elements to the Third Metric movement that are describe in more detail by Arianna herself below**, but here is a quick summary. 

One, we need to prioritize our health and wellbeing. This goes without question. If we are not healthy, both physically and mentally, we cannot contribute to this world like we were born to. We do have a destiny, and exciting, liberating, and passionate one, but if we are not well, then we will not reach our calling, so we must take the time and check in with ourselves. 

Second, we need to tap into our wisdom, strength, and peace more often. Typically it is in trying times that we are able to tap into this finite resources of ours. We do it out of necessity, and it helps us trudge through the garbage life has handed us. If we could tap into this more often we would be able to unfold worlds we never imagined, with an eye seeing a holistic picture of a better tomorrow. It takes time to learn to cultivate this "sixth sense" into a regular practice, so buy some mindfulness books. Practice yoga. Talk to a therapist. For us to reach a better future, we must find our center.

Third, we need to give ourselves permission to wonder about the world. If you look at a child who is at a place they've never been before, you can see in their eyes this great sense of wonder, excitement, and possibilities. As we grow older it's as if the world has gone gray to us, we find much less to wonder about and a lot more to worry about. It's true, there is a lot to worry about, but worry solves nothing, but wonder may solve it all. 

The fourth and final element of the Third Metric is our need to give back. As Arianna Huffington talks about in her speech I attached below, people who give back have at a greater state of health and wellbeing. But giving back shouldn't be for selfish reasons, for then that would accomplish nothing. Instead, the importance of giving back strengthening other's wellbeing and health and giving them a platform to start rolling a new ball of health, wellbeing, strength, wonder, and giving. As cliche as it may sound, it all starts with one act. One act, and this world can change for the better. 

I cannot tell you how much I believe in this movement and am exciting to follow it and be apart of it in any way possible. I do believe we are in a time of transition and we can all do our part. So stop working, and start thriving! 

What are some changes you are making in your life today to start thriving?