I recently delivered some food parcels to families in our area. This was “helping those who have less” in one of its clearer and more concrete forms.
I was happy to do it, but it didn’t feel that great: I loaded up my car, delivered the packages to some people who said thanks, and then drove home.
It didn’t feel great, but it was worth doing.
This is sort of opposite to yesterday’s example – front line drudgery as opposed to the administrative kind – but the point is the same: feelings can be deceptive. “Rewarding” work isn’t necessarily helpful – and work that feels like an inconvenient or uncomfortable grind can be hugely important.
Recognising this can help us to manage how we feel about the drudgework; it might even create the alchemy that turns flat ambivalence into a deeper (though still unglamorous) sense of satisfaction, strengthening our resolve to do more.