Learn How to Keep It One Hundred by Reading Toni Morrison's New Yorker Essay

I was talking to a friend about writing and keeping it one hundred. She said, "Did you read Toni Morrison's New Yorker essay about work? Talk about keeping it one hundred."

So when I left the office and got on the train, I pulled my phone out and settled down to read. I was exhausted because we were launching a huge project. My right wrist hurt and my brain was in shutdown mode.

Morrison's words are so uplifting. In the essay, she recounts a job cleaning a woman's house and the misery she was feeling. Then her father sets her right about how to frame one's mindset about work. It boils down to this:

"1. Whatever the work is, do it well—not for the boss but for yourself.

2. You make the job; it doesn’t make you.

3. Your real life is with us, your family.

4. You are not the work you do; you are the person you are."

"You are the person you are." I love this. We are people, separate from our work, even if that work is writing.