Paying Caesar

Siphesihle speaks to the myths of work life balance. How you should approach a lifestyle that makes you believe you need more than just a 9 – 5 job to make it.
Paying Caesar

Pay unto Caesar, what’s due unto Caesar. Caffeine, adrenaline and bloodshot eyes. There is no antidote. He’s looking at you with discontent in his eyes and there is no way around him. He doesn’t care about how much you’ve cried or whether you’ve run out of your midnight oil. The only words he utters is “Get it done”. 

The reality is that we’ve probably all heard this voice in our heads before. It comes with a bit of panic, excitement and a full dosage of uncertainty. It’s a gentle reminder that we are alive even on this treacherous and lonely journey we walk. The walk of uncertainty very often described by those afar by its more eloquent name “Entrepreneurship”, just eludes to the façade of glamour that has surrounded this soul binding journey. 

As we connect over platforms like LinkedIn and Instagram and see the illusions of entrepreneurship and hard work. We disconnect ourselves from the reality of what this journey takes. It’s a surreal reality. Hard work is more than just toiling, pulling an all-nighter or refuelling on a six-pack of something that should give you wings. But it is a sacrifice of self for the other, (for your cause and your purpose) the highest form of servanthood. It’s a sacrifice to a higher cause, a nod and a calling that so very few will pick up. The reality is that this thing needs a heart and Caesar wants it all.

Imagine the greatest meeting in the world. Everyone you aspire to and admire, present. From Bezos to Musk and a few other notable changemakers across sectors and industries of influence, present. It’s a dining room that winds far and wide with great conversation. Ideas and solutions are thrown across the table with great jubilee. The door is wide open. There’s a catch. Caesar is at the door. This epiphany has become my conviction which has kept me going even when my eyes burn with passion for slumber. All I see as I unknowingly close my eyes, is Caesar, with his outstretched laboured arm asking for his timesheet, that is only payable in hard work, more hard work, and even more hard work. There is no way around him and no cheat codes that can get him out of my way to the room filled with my destiny. Not even a mention of a mutual connection will get me through, all that Caesar wants are his dues and his dues paid in full. 

It’s become super important to understand things in a context like for example whilst listening to Jeff Bezos on the David Rubenstein show.

Bezos emphasizes his importance on work-life balance. But we must balance ourselves here for a minute. We’ve got to understand that we cannot apply principles from someone’s chapter 60 in life to our own Chapter 1, even if he is the wealthiest man on the planet. To sit around and try to apply working from 10:00 – 18:00 daily (Because that is what Bezos currently does) will result in your dues for Caesar being in arrears. This leads to repayments taking you 20 years to achieve rather than the 10 years we have been allocated. And by this time all of your efforts would be in vanity and Caesar will have you as an afterthought. 

To believe that you are forming something of significance whilst only working a regular “9 – 5” or putting in 8 hours of work a day, is to believe a fallacy. This wrung true to me when watching Gary Vee’s keynote with the staff of Wieden + Kennedy.

The equation is simple. Find your direction. Focus on that and put an ungodly amount of time and effort into it and who knows maybe at the end of it all Caesar will be happy.

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