To be a remarkable leader, you must be able to inspire others. But, you can't inspire others, unless you are inspired yourself. What inspires you?
"Why are we here?" is a question I often ask in workshops. The answer, that most groups ultimately come to is: 'to be happy'.
All humans seem to want the same thing. To be happy. Probe deeply enough about why you do anything, and when you get to the core of it your response will be something along the lines of, "I'm doing it so I can feel good".
Generally, we feel truly good, truly happy, when we are doing things that align with our inner callings.
A client once said to me, "I feel that my spirit is being sapped every time I go to work. Just thinking about work feels like someone has dumped a huge weight on my shoulders. The company itself is great, and I like the people there, but I don't feel like I'm doing anything that is meaningful, or that maybe there's something more I should be doing".
Do you sometimes feel this way?
It might be a slightly different reason, from my client, as to why you get that heavy feeling.
It might be that you are expected to deliver results that are way above (or below) your capability.
Or maybe the actual work, your organization, does, holds little interest for you.
Or maybe you've ended up in this career to please your parents and keep a roof over your head.
If you are or have ever been in this place, you know just how deadening it can be to your spirit.
Who wants to spend 100,000 hours doing work that they don't enjoy? (40 hours/week x 48 weeks x 50 years)
There are three things you can do when you find yourself in this place:
1. Complain about it
2. Stick your head in the sand and pretend you're doing okay
3. Roll up your sleeves and do what it takes to get happy
I know you are an option 3 person - you are an above the line person otherwise you wouldn't be a member of this club, so - let's take a look at what you need to to get happy.
But, if you can get good at designing your life so that you spend a significant proportion of your time doing things you love, then you'll transform your life.
You might feel that you are unable to spend your entire life doing the things you love!
It is my spirit calling to me, "You are in alignment - you are doing what you love to do".
But it is certainly a moment of flow for me. I feel fully alive and engaged. And, in that moment, it is as much my life's calling, as when I'm speaking to a group of 200 people.
Maybe, maybe not.
Will I change the world from having read that book?
For example, I am at my most aligned when I have my head inside a book. It can be a book that is a trashy novel. It can be a psychological text I'm learning from. Whichever, when I'm reading, I am happy and fulfilled in that moment.
What I've recently come to understand is that ...
The thing is we often make a lot of fuss about finding our 'life purpose'. I've certainly been caught in the trap of thinking that for my life to have meaning, I need to be living some grand life purpose.
For example ... this love of reading ... well, for to do my job well, not only do the tips I provide you need to be proven in high-performance environments, but I also delight in researching and finding the latest human performance techniques and tools.
The balance between 'head in books reading' ... and being out and about coaching and delivering workshops creates a fabulous life for me. You too can do the same with a bit of creativity.
Like a magnet, you will draw to you people and experiences that do indeed enhance the greater good simply because you are aligned in all that you say and do.
Instead, spend some time focusing on and thinking about the good that your current job contains.
The Law Of Attraction states that what you focus upon you get more of. So, if you are focusing upon all the things that you dislike about this job - you can't help but draw more and more of that to you.
I can almost hear you thinking, "Are you crazy!?" ... but hear me out!
Well, this may seem challenging and simplistic all in the one breath. However, the first thing you need to do is to appreciate the job that you have!
What can you do to get happier in a job you don't love?
Even when you are in a job that you don't love, you can get aligned with your inner power source. You can coach yourself to a happier, more inspiring place.
And, you'll give this living an aligned life, living a life of purpose, a power-punch when you're able to train yourself to be happy, even when you are doing things that don't necessarily make your heart soar.
Here's a tip! Straight off the bat, one of the things you could appreciate is that this job is highlighting to you exactly what you don't want! This job is showing you that it doesn't float your boat, and it is time for you to take responsibility for finding what does indeed put a spring in your step!
So, go ahead and make a list of all the things you like about your current job - and send a message out to the universe "Yep, give me more of that please!"
Your next step is to get clear about what you do want. In the pdf of this article, there are a series of exercises to help you reflect upon and get clear about what you want. Go to the downloads to grab the pdf.
While you are working on designing the new way ... remember to sit in appreciation, for all that the current job gives you, while you are bringing yourself into alignment with what it is you want.
I said it sounded simplistic, didn't I? The act of appreciating and finding the fun in your current circumstances will get that magnet working ... so you cannot help but attract more good experiences ... and all of a sudden you may find that what you do want magically appears.
I have so many clients for whom this has happened ... spending the time to describe and design more of what they love to do into their job and daily life ... and rapidly finding that their life suddenly feels more fulfilling on all levels.
Sure, getting clear about what you want - and aligning yourself with that - might mean you need to exit your current company and make yourself available for other opportunities.
As many of my clients have found - when you get yourself into alignment about what makes you happy and are prepared to have some robust, in-depth, 'conversations in truth' with your leader and others in your organization ... you may find that the organization is just perfect. It was simply that you hadn't declared to the world clearly enough, what it is you wanted.
Most high-performance organizations are now focused on helping people to design their jobs so that they can make use of their strengths. So, once you know what does indeed ‘float your boat’, have a discussion with your boss, and together you may be able to redesign your current role ... and get you to work with that spring in your step!
We each want for our skills, abilities, attributes, and desires to be acknowledged and used. Get that and alignment follows! When alignment happens
You are happy. Nothing more.