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I am a big believer in forcing yourself outside of your comfort zone – to have new experiences, broaden your perspective, and challenge the paradigms through which you view the world. That being said, there’s nothing wrong with a few comforting routines. One of mine is having a cup of tea, preferably black, and a bit of dark chocolate after dinner.

I was recently enjoying my nightly routine and came across this little piece of advice on a tea bag: Joy is the essence of success. My graduate Research Methods professor immediately comes to mind. He would say, “define joy, define success.” Perhaps, even, define essence. Let’s keep it simple and just define joy and success.

What is joy? For the purpose of this blog, I will define joy as the feeling of contentment you get from doing work you love, work you find meaning in, which doesn’t have to be save-the-world, do-gooder work, but any work you find meaning in. Success I would define as being content with where you are at, wherever that may be.

So doing what you find personally meaningful is the essence of being content with where you are at.

Read the next post to learn what Herminia Ibarra, a professor at INSEAD, says about our working identity.