Unless you’re chopping wood, you are not paid to work. You are paid to think.
“Oh, but I design social media graphics for $15 an hour!” Well, if you made one that generated $1,000 in value for your client, I’m sure they’d notice – and so would you. Either way, you wouldn’t be on hourly pay much longer.
Maybe they don’t need a bolded quote for every tweet. Maybe they need a comprehensive infographic. “Here. I made this. Try it. Let’s see if it works.” That’s a thinking challenge, not a work challenge. The effort comes later.
Your output is just the proof of your thinking. It shows what you do when you’re not swinging the axe – and it better be mulling over how to chop more wood without sharpening more axes or, better yet, how to do the thing without needing to cut down trees at all.
If Da Vinci was right and “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,” then simplifying is the ultimate skill.
Think first, work second.