If You Don’t Enjoy It, Why Are You Doing It..?

I’m taking another look at a quote image of mine in this video & article, and I hope you enjoy it…

I don’t hide the fact that I take a lot of photos of sunrises and sunsets for the quote images. I took that one down at Whitstable on the North Kent coast, and it’s a great place to see some lovely sunsets.

A great place to *enjoy* some lovely sunsets.

Taking in the fresh sea air and watching the sun go down over the sea does trigger the brain to see things in a wider perspective, to ask some questions of ourselves, so this time I ask this question –

If you don’t enjoy it, why are you doing it?

Now, while it might seem like a simple question, it’s clearly a question that’s dependent on any individual’s circumstances, and the answer can vary from ‘I don’t know,’ to ‘that’s just the way it is,’ to ‘I have to.’


I think any of those answers can be challenged.

If you don’t know why you keep doing something you don’t enjoy, then that might be the easiest one to solve – stop doing it!

If you stop doing it, you may well find that there’s no problem, and you’ve removed something from your life that you don’t enjoy – it really can be as simple as that!

Of course it could be that if you stop doing it, the other answers come into play, and someone tells you fairly quickly that it ‘has’ to be like that, you ‘have’ to do it.

This is an important point, if you answer that you keep doing it because you have to, who is saying you have to? Is it someone else, or is it *yourself*!

In either case, it’s important to fully investigate that reason of you ‘having’ to. Is it actually true? Is it just to fit into someone else’s agenda rather than it actually being a necessity that you do it?

Are you doing it, (and of course that includes thinking or saying things) just to please someone else – maybe a boss, a family member, your friends and peer groups?

Are you still doing something you don’t enjoy because you’re not confident in your ability to do what you *do* enjoy? Worried that others will laugh at you, or pull you down?

Blimey, you can see I wasn’t joking when I said there maybe many reasons why, both internal and external!

So, what can we do about it..?

Well, apart from making the choice to really take on answering the original question, which can be extremely revealing, we can twist the question around to ask –

‘If you enjoy doing something, why aren’t you doing it?’

You might think that will just give you the same answers, and it many cases it will, but it will also add a different flavour to the way you seek out an answer.

Once you take on the challenge of accepting *your* enjoyment as just as valid s anyone else’s, and you ask what you can do about doing more of what you enjoy, you’ll find that if the answer is that you should just *start* doing more of what you enjoy, then to get the space, the time, the freedom to do it, you might have to start saying ‘no’ to what you don’t enjoy.

Try saying ‘no.’

It can be much easier to say yes, to avoid any confrontation or upset, but in the long term it’s not easier at all, because it will bring a drip drip knowledge that you are cutting yourself off from your own enjoyment, due to what other people want.

Start saying ‘no.’

It can be scary to start saying no, but it won’t take long before you start getting used to it. It can bring consequences that might have to be dealt with, but you’ll start getting used to that too.

What will happen if you say ‘no?
Maybe it’s time you found out?

It could be the small things in life, it could be the big things like a full career or other major lifestyle changes.

I always like to phrase it as ‘no thanks,’ because then you are have that inbuilt politeness to it, which can calm a lot of troubled waters. I also prefer to not spend too long justifying. Explaining is one thing, and that’s fine, but ‘justifying’ tends to imply that you are seeking the approval of someone else for your decision.

If you find yourself being pushed down the justifying road, then stick with the ‘no thanks’ response, and if you’re firm with it, other people will get used to the fact that if you don’t want to do it, you’ll just say so!

What about responsibilities?

That’s an important question, because what I’m *not* saying is that you should just drop any responsibility that you don’t enjoy doing!

I’m not saying that at all. Responsibilities are important, integrity towards them is important. So is integrity towards yourself though.

It can be a juggling act to change things around. Doing more of what you enjoy in place of things you don’t enjoy can be challenge to actually do something about.

It’s worth it though. Oh, it’s so worth it.

"Gordon Bryan", "Whitstable"

Doing things we don’t enjoy can drain the soul. Yes, they can also enrich the soul if it’s in the service of others, but we need to start the exercising of working out if it is actually serving others, or simply pleasing others while doing a *disservice* to ourselves.

So, I did say the question might be a little more complicated than it first seems, but it can be really life changing, so are you ready to look deeply at the answer as I ask again – if you don’t enjoy it, why are you doing it?

Ok, I’d love to hear what you think, do leave a comment!

‘Til Next Time,
Health & happiness,
P.S. If you’d like to find out more about moving from what you don’t enjoy to what you *do* enjoy, then grab my free 8 step goal achievement formula!

Do leave a comment!

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  • Gordon, you are so right in this post. So many people waste their lives doing something that they don’t like. Life is too short. I agree, say no and go to something you will enjoy.

    • Hi Roy,
      It’s a good plan isn’t it! Sometimes it might be hard to implement, sometimes it might be *very* hard, but sometimes it can be surprisingly easy – and the rewards can be life changing!
      Thanks for stopping by,
      cheers, Gordon