If only I had known them earlier
If we are to believe the results of the Gallup Poll on the state of engaged versus disengaged workers, approximately nine out of every ten workers — 87% — are either disengaged or actively disengaged at work.
That’s an alarming number of people who get up each workday and go to a workplace that they just tolerate of loathe.These individuals are spending a substantial part of their waking moments doing something that has a negative return on their overall well being.
Do you find yourself among these numbers or are you one of the few — the 13% — who are very satisfied with your career?
Towards the end of 2007, I would have raised my hand as one of those who fall within the disengaged category. I knew that I needed to make a change. I wasn’t as satisfied with my work as I used to be after a twenty-one year career.
Going to work was a chore. I wasn’t looking forward to it as I once did. My health was being affected by it. My stress level had risen and I wasn’t the fun-loving guy I used to be. My family, especially my wife, knew and felt it. I had to make a decision, which I did. I resigned.
It didn’t happen overnight. It took me eighteen months to come to this decision. It wasn’t easy but it was necessary. I’ve not regretted making that decision.
Here are 3 reasons why you will not regret making the decision to follow the dream of your heart.
1. You will be in alignment with yourself
Why is it that 87% of people are not engaged with what they do? Could it be that they are in the wrong place? Could it be that they have no pleasure in what they do? Could it be that they feel stuck?
These are just a few of the reasons among others.
I do believe that the main reason is that they are not resonating with what they do. They are simply not “feeling” it. Their work has become humdrum; mundane. They are just doing it for the paycheck. But there’s no enjoyment or fulfillment.
There will not be an enjoyment in your work when it doesn’t align with who you are.
When you make the decision to follow your dream and find work that aligns with it, you will be happier and more fulfilled.
2. You will grow more
What I have learned over the last several years since I resigned from my previous job and is now doing the work that I truly want to do, is simply amazing. Words are not enough to express what I have learned and am learning.
My desire to grow as a person — intellectually and relationally — is at an all time high. I simply cannot get enough. Sometimes I wish I could simply inhale all the information that I desire and meet as many people as I have on my list, in one swoop.
Not only am I in alignment with my inner being, but I’m discovering people who have a similar mindset and share a similar desire as I do.
There’s something synergistic about hanging out with people who share similar aspirations. It may not be the same but the goal of making an impact, is the common denominator. It simply excites me.
This exposure has allowed me to learn new techniques and strategies that helps me become better at what I do as well as a resource for others who are looking to do something similar. I can now offer them coaching, access to my content as well as point them in the right direction to get the help they need, if I cannot be of help to them.
3. Work will no longer feel like work
There are a few people who have been given or taken credit for one version or another of this quotation: Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life.
Whenever I’ve used it, I’ve given credit to Confucius. I believe he was the first person’s name I saw that was associated with it.
It is not important who said it. The point is, when you are doing something you love — following the song of your heart — it won’t feel like work to you.
A few questions that I ask some of my clients in determining their career path are:
- What would you do if money wasn’t an issue?
- What is it that you do and time passes and you don’t even notice?
- What is it that you do that others commend you for?
- What is it that you do where you would skip a meal to keep going?
How would you answer the above four questions?
Your answer gives you a hint as to what you need to be going after. This is where you will be among the 13% who are loving what they do as work.
As a full disclaimer, I’m not yet doing full-time what it is my heart yearns to do. I’m much closer to it now than I was a few years back.
However, I find that when I’m working within my “sweet spot” I’m fully aligned with the answer I would give to the four questions above.
These are times when work no longer feels like work.
If these reasons inspire you to take action, let me suggest you take it slowly. Secondly, get a mentor or a coach to help you filter your ideas. Thirdly, surround yourself with people who aren’t dream-killers. Finally, talk it over with the person or persons closest to you.
Which of these three reasons resonated the most with you? I would love to hear your take on the matter.
Originally published at medium.com