A couple years ago, my wife and I spent 3 weeks in Italy. I woke up early one morning, walked down to a cafe just outside of Via del Corso in Rome, and looked for somewhere to plug in and respond to emails.
No power outlets. No WiFi. Not even as much as a sizeable table to spread out on. Instead, there were dozens of locals hanging out at the bar, taking espresso shots and socializing.
Each day I searched for an American-style cafe to plug in, and each day I found the same thing.
I’ve had similar experiences in other parts of the world, and after a while, I figured out that it’s a very American thing to take your work with you everywhere you go. To open your laptop on flights. Take phone calls during dinner. Respond to emails while you eat breakfast.
There’s a culture here that often applauds overworking. It’s the grind, right? That voiceless lie that says, “I’m so important, and this career journey I’m on matters so much, that everything else just doesn’t measure up.”
So, we surrender our relationships.
We table the important conversations.
We miss the obvious cues that people in our lives need us.
We live to chase that thing that someone else is chasing that they heard was worth chasing because they watched someone else chasing it.
We’re better than that.
You’re better than that.
And the people in your life deserve better than that.
Go be better, and together, let’s start to #ChaseWhatMatters.