A few weeks back I was preparing for a team retreat I was leading when I came across a power question that caused me to stop and think:
If you had your work life to live over, at what point would you have chosen a different path that would have led you to more success and happiness?
Has that point come for you? Are you at it now? What's stopping you from pursuing more success and happiness today?
…anymore than the key to getting out of debt is to sell your house and everything you own to pay off credit cards.
You’d never do the latter, so don’t leap right to the former when things feel rough at work.
First, figure out why you're stuck.
I had a client call me in a flurry this past week.
“I feel stuck,” she said.
I understand. I’ve been there. I started to poke and prod, trying to identify the core issue.
"What caused the stuckness?” I asked.
“I don’t know. That’s why I’m calling you.”
"When did you start feeling it?” I asked.
“It’s always been there, I think.”
"Ok, let’s try this: what things have you enjoyed doing in the past few weeks and which ones have drained your energy?” I asked.
“I don’t know how to answer that. I go back and forth constantly.”
"Hmm. Ok. Let’s go deeper. Are you in the right arena? (see here.)" I asked.
“I’m not sure. Sometimes I see big problems I want to solve that have nothing to do with my industry, like making a more well-designed women’s high heel.”
At this point, I was feeling stuck. She was stuck and so was I. Then it dawned on me.
"Have you looked at your Profile of Self?” I asked.
“What’s that?” she replied.
I reminded her that the Profile is a one-page document, a snapshot of who she is when she’s at her best. It’s her North Star. And if she’s feeling incongruent, it’s likely because she’s drifted from her best self. Role creep is a real thing, meaning we inch away from what we were hired to do and toward something totally different.
I sent her the Profile we created for her during a moment of clarity more than a year ago and she responded back, “That’s exactly what I needed. Thank you.”
The Profile is the key. When you're feeling stuck, get clear about why by reviewing your Profile of Self and identifying whether it's a values, talents, or environments thing, then address the core issue.
If it's values, you're not likely to shift the values of your manager or organization and it may be time to start searching.
If it's talents, figure out what you like to do and do more of it. Also, figure out where you feel blocked and address it.
If it's environments, what's out of whack and how can you change it? By the way, environments are the easiest to change or alter. If you like dynamic work, get out of the office more. If you need more light, sit by a window. If you love to collaborate, find a thought partner.
Don't jump right to "I quit" when things feel flat. Analyze why, diagnose the core issue, then make the change!
Hi! I'm Dustin.
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