Yet it is the essential ingredient for engagement and feeling fulfilled. For many people that sense of fulfillment in the work place is an elusive endless pursuit. I hear this in my office all the time. “I have completed the education, starred in my results, even got the great job but there is something missing. There is an insidious gnawing emptiness in me that dissipates a good day in a blink of an eye.”
This is a common lament. Driven, conscientious workers, keen to get ahead in their careers declare they are plagued by their uncompromising feeling for the need to be fulfilled. Over time this erodes a person’s confidence. Wham! there they go down the slippery slope of disengagement. Really it has nothing to do with the work place. It is about how the person is feeling. It takes a bit of soul-searching for that light bulb to finally go off. We have been conditioned to believe that a sense of fulfillment comes from external achievement and things. Whilst this does give one a buzz for a small moment, it is not sustainable. We can even become addicted to seeking that endorphin rush of feeling fulfilled to the detriment of everything else.
How do you use courage for success?
The very first question I ask a person when they are feeling this way is, “Are you courageous?” Usually the answer is, “Well, in some areas of my life I am.”
I then ask them to define courage. Oops, now we have a stumbling block as to why they can’t feel fulfilled. You see what most people describe as courage, is actually being brave and they are two very separate things. The original meaning of Courage comes from Latin word “Cor” meaning heart. The heart was described as the source of emotion. Emotions are “energy in motion” – the more positive emotional energy, the more productive a person becomes. Courage is a deliberate intention.
This was a fact known by the ancients but somehow the true meaning of it got lost along the way. Fortunately, with the persistence of amazing institutes like Heartmath we are being reminded of the power of coming from heart. More importantly why courage is the essential ingredient that gives us that sense of feeling fulfilled.
“It is not commonly known that the heart actually sends more signals to the brain than the brain sends to the heart! Moreover these heart signals have a significant effect on brain function – influencing emotional processing as well as higher cognitive faculties such as attention, perception, memory and problem solving.”….Heartmath
So, what does this mean regarding feeling fulfilled? As fulfillment is a feeling, it is an emotion. To achieve a feeling, it must come from the heart not the head. Fulfillment comes from living authentically. I am sure you have heard this before but what does it mean, to be authentic?
Courage shows the world your Authentic Self
We are all come into this world with what I call our kit bag. We all have unique personality traits, strengths, skills, talents and attributes. These are so natural to us that most of the time we don’t even acknowledge the power they bring to us. Unfortunately, growing up we are often conditioned into what society and the workplace deem as normal. So, we spend the rest of life trying to live the attributes of others. The outcome of this is we try deal with life with skills that are acquired not natural. Whilst acquired skills are great, they do not have the emotional punch that our natural abilities have. The result is we don’t quite get that same euphoric feeling.
When we start to acknowledge our natural abilities and we become passionate about expressing them, we are coming from heart. Enter the power of courage! As soon as we come from heart, our brain starts to work out the best way to express them. The result is we become a dual highway of power. Feeling satisfied in our endeavours despite the fact that there may be setbacks and disappointments. Plus feeling fulfilled because we are expressing our authentic abilities.
Courage in Action
One of my clients whom I have had the privilege of working with over the years came to me originally for a private matter. After dealing with that we turned our attention to her career. She was a hard worker and very efficient at what she did. Unfortunately, she would become very nervous when we discussed showing some initiative to start to progress into other fields within her workplace. She actually worked in a fabulous company that is very progressive and placed a huge importance on staff wellbeing. As we delved further, it was evident that my client’s family back ground was the factor that was holding her back. Being brought up with limiting mantras of; work hard, keep your head down and fly under the radar. Don’t attract too much attention in case you lose your job. It was evident that this conditioned response to how to be in the workforce was a major stumbling block. So we began to explore “What if….?” “What if you were never told those things. What would you go for whole heartedly?”
She thought for less than a minute and her eyes lit up and she said, “I would love to lead people, to believe in them and support them in their dreams and what they want out of their careers.”
My response was “Isn’t that what you truly want?” The tears welled up and she could barely get the words out “Yes” she stammered.
So, we set about discovering her amazing authentic skills, attributes, strengths and showed her the power of expressing them with courage.
The result of courage!
Today she leads one of the most powerful teams in her work place. She travels through Australia and internationally, empowering staff and connecting with clients. Talk about a metamorphosis, all because she decided to have the courage to overcome her conditioning and come from the heart.
We all get caught into stereotypical patterns and our belief systems get wired by the environment we are raised in. It wasn’t that her parents deliberately set out to make her feel inadequate. They just wanted her to be safe in her job. Unfortunately, in the process, their fears were soul murdering her natural talents.
I love Einstein’s statement “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing it is stupid.”
Call on courage take stock of your natural abilities
Have some fun! Get an attributes list together and then have the courage to express them through what you do. I promise you that your engagement levels will begin to soar. You will obtain a sense of fulfillment by courageously expressing who your truly are through what you do!