I'm attending a wonderful seminar right now in Santa Fe, New Mexico, run by the good folks at Santa Fe Leadership Center.
Dr. Gary Gruber had a wonderful remark that I wanted to share. Though not quite verbatim, it goes like this: "Don't let your job get in the way of your work." Your job is what your job description says you must accomplish on a daily basis, but "work" is your larger journey. As such, it doesn't correspond to neat little packages of time that we prefer to ascribe to our days.
I like to use the Latin word for work, opus, because it feels less bound to time and more open-ended, more journey-like. For example, someone's magnum opus is a remarkable thing because you know they haven't simply created it on a Saturday afternoon whilst nibbling a biscuit.
The concept is similar to something my mentor during graduate school told me, as I was about to finish my doctorate. He said, "Once you finish the Ph.D., you can finally start your real work."
What is your opus?