Updated: Mar 16, 2019
I caught up with a very dear friend yesterday. A friend who has imparted huge amounts of wisdom to me, and who, many years ago helped me refine my coaching approach as an extra-honorary test subject!
We had sat together in a room, for quite a few hours, and had a discussion about what was really important to achieve in his life and career, what made him happy and what he thought he should be doing. We wrote up the responses which immediately brought some clarity to some key questions he had at that time. He reset his path - and then I imagine it was consigned to the bottom drawer!
We met yesterday, and with pride we talked about him achieving such amazing success in his career. He is one of the most driven people I know, and I had no doubt he would reach the heady heights that he aspired to . However, there was something missing. The usual sparkle and vigour just wasn't quite there. He explained how he was literally 'knocking it out of the park' in terms of his targets......so why was he not jumping for joy?
On dusting off the answers to those simple questions from all those years back (I am a habitual hoarder luckily!) it transpired, that whilst he had achieved the role he wanted and the organisation was reaping the benefits of the skills that they valued most, he had lost sight of some of the other things that made him happy; things that he really values in a rewarding career - like collaboration, a sense of all being in it together, being more human less machine. Things had skewed out of balance.
Sometimes we can leave our authentic selves at home when we feel that where we work is not aligned with all the things we are. We may transform into what we are perceived to be, and relegate those important parts of who we are for non-working hours only. This can be tiring and ultimately stressful.
Sometimes its good to step back, and take a long, hard look at the things that are really important to us - the things that make those long hours and 'not so good' days worthwhile.
Asking yourself a few simple questions can really help to provide clarity on your current situation and where you may need to make some tweaks - What makes me happy? What do I love to do? What's my obsession? What do I think I ought to be doing?
These are much more difficult to answer than they first appear - but once you start exploring, it can be invaluable in making those important life and career decisions.
So before you leave the house tomorrow, make sure you have everything. Keys? Check. Money? Check. Self? Double-check!