Sounds great! But are you (or someone you know) one of the 70 percent of Americans who do not feel engaged or inspired at your job?
Popular — and oftentimes expensive — strategies to boost work morale, like ping pong tables and catered meals, aren’t really helping. The Gallup report concluded that it’s really about managers focusing on their employees’ strengths. And in fact, the 30% who are engaged said that they are passionate about their work and feel a connection to their company – AND ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE MOST INNOVATION within their organization!
So how do we find that work that engages and energizes us? …And through which we can use our strengths, talents and what truly motivates us?
BEGIN by asking yourself these questions:
What am I doing when I feel most alive or feel that my world has opened up in some way?… whether it’s solving a problem, creating, connecting with someone, traveling, or listening to sports on the radio…
Blaise Bryant was “only ten years old when he knew radio would become his dream job.” In his words, “It was the first time I’d ever heard baseball on the radio; the detailed descriptions really sold me and the rest has been history…As a person who’s blind, radio is the only medium where pictures are created in words instead of visuals. Radio is also well known as theatre of the mind because you’re taking those word pictures and developing them just by processing the info. With that said, it’s the easiest medium to relate to. Plus, radio gives you the ability and freedom to create those pictures and send them out to the audience…the only photography I’d be able to do successfully.”
What comes so naturally to me that I think it’s “normal” or that everyone can do it?
What do I do (or have done in the past) that I enjoy and causes me to be so absorbed that I lose all track of time?
Stephen Hawking’s research and tremendous intellect come to mind! Following Hawking’s passing this past February, physicist Kip Thorne marveled at Hawking’s mental prowess. “Hawking was able to develop new ways of wrapping his brain around things that enabled him to out-think anybody else in the field…And he out-thought people with great regularity.”
Prior to his Lou Gehrig disease diagnosis, Hawking reported that he felt bored with life. “There had not seemed to be anything worth doing.” After his diagnosis, Hawking showed a new intensity for his work and began studying black holes and the origins of the universe. As his health diminished—he began using a wheelchair—and his life and research flourished…ALONG WITH HIS INTELLECT.
Probably the best-known scientist in the world’s final message to all of us was humble, but clear about what energized him! “Our picture of the universe has changed a great deal in the last fifty years. I am happy if I made a small contribution…I want to share my excitement and enthusiasm about this quest.” What a meaningful way for Hawking to engage his intellect…which came so naturally to him!
What makes you feel useful, excited, inspired?
Sometimes it is the particular challenge that we have faced and overcome that defines our passion or mission…and a desire to help others overcome the same challenge!
Think of how many people are drawn to help others in areas that have challenged them or a family member… Recently, a friend of mine, who leads children’s activity groups shared, “I find myself particularly attuned to the quieter, frequently unnoticed children. That was my experience growing up…and is so integral to the work that I do.” I also think of lots of folks who now work in the disabilities field, including addictions…They grew up with a sibling with a disability or confronted their own chemical addiction.
Rita Corey is the founder and artistic director of Musign Theatre Company, a troupe of four performers (including herself), all of whom are deaf. “Performing is in my blood. But my passion,” Rita explains, “is to make music’s excitement accessible to both hearing and deaf audience members…Deaf people don’t think they’ll enjoy music. I try to prove them wrong by visualizing it. They realize it’s fun to watch, fun to feel the vibrations coming through the floor.” Rita’s excitement has got to be catchy…and integral to her success!
AND THEN WHEN YOU BEGIN TO DISCOVER (or rediscover) whatever it is that makes you feel most alive, FIND A WAY TO DO MORE OF IT!…
Not only will you feel energized and invigorated, but you may encounter an EXCITING OPPORTUNITY!
Blaise Bryant was part of a volunteer Business Advisory group at MHANYS. He contributed in many ways to our workforce development forums and group members got to know him….both his talents and aspirations to become a radio broadcaster. So when we realized that our forum a year ago December called for a Master of Ceremonies, we thought of Blaise! It was truly a WIN-WIN. Blaise was a perfect match AND both the request and experience were confidence-builders for him. Check out the first four minutes of the forum’s audio recording at https://youtu.be/PVtbo_xpnhM. Blaise’s natural strengths are right out there…his radio voice and big personality!
So WHAT ARE YOU WILLING TO TRY NOW? …temporary assignments, internships, advisory roles, volunteer opportunities, clubs/interest groups? Even interviewing an individual in the field to which you aspire can be enlightening!
You may find that this new direction is not for you…before you invest a lot of time and financial resources!
OR YOU MAY FIND YOURSELF REALLY ENJOYING IT… Check out Blaise’s interview with journalist and sports reporter ED LUCAS at https://www.linkedin.com/in/blaise-bryant-403a1650/detail/treasury/summary/?entityUrn=urn%3Ali%3Afs_treasuryMedia%3A(ACoAAArUM8MBLLnJYPm6HN7SxokDgrPl1Meaapg%2C50137250).
…AND MOTIVATED TO TAKE THE NEXT STEPS! Blaise was truly inspired by this interview and went on to host a weekly podcast, ‘The Blaise Bryant Show.’ “While it’s not a paid radio gig,” explained Blaise, “I pride myself in being able to discuss a wide variety of topics from politics, to sports, disability-related issues, etc.”
And like Blaise, you may find yourself building your confidence, energy, excitement and network of “door-openers”!
ARE YOU LOOKING TO FEEL ENERGIZED AND EXCITED ABOUT GOING TO WORK!?
JOIN ME for a free workshop/discussion on FEELING STUCK IN A DEAD-END JOB on Monday, April 30th at 6 p.m. at the Guilderland Public Library. This is a great opportunity to learn strategies for MOVING FORWARD IN YOUR CAREER! Register at https://guilpl.evanced.info/eventcalendar.asp?ag=&et=&df=calendar&cn=0&private=0&ln=0 (Go to April 30 and click “Feeling Stuck in a Dead-End Job”)
Or come for free resume critiquing on Wednesday, May 2nd (5:30 to 7:30 p.m.) at the Castleton Public Library… We will work together to create a resume that highlights your strengths…and targets a job that fits you!
For sign-up details go to http://www.castletonpubliclibrary.org/events.html and go to May 2nd…
Can’t make those dates? Click EVENTS tab at https://www.yourcareerfitmatters.com… For information on other workshop and resume critiquing opportunities!
I look forward to meeting you at one or more of these events and supporting your efforts to move forward in your career!
Marsha Lazarus, MBA
Career/Workplace Coach and Trainer