Working with my coaching clients over the last 15 years, I realized that I had done a great job helping them achieve their goals, but felt there was something missing. You know that anti-climactic feeling when the honey moon phase is over and you realize what you got yourself into. I had to come up with a simple tool that allowed me to help my clients assess what was really going on, so we could put a plan of action together into achieving what they wanted next. The Fulfillment Factor Assessment was born.
Around two years ago, I started using this tool with my clients. I needed to design a tool that changed the language around what was most important to my client, and how to truly help them identify what was holding them back, the distractions, the activities that did not fill them up. I published the tool in my book, Be A Badass: Six Tools to Up-Level Your Life after I had see the amazing results leveraging this tool with them.
As an over-achiever, hyper organized, control freak in my 20’s, I realized that as much as I was checking the boxes of the success map I had set out for myself, I was never really asked if I was happy or if the work I was doing filled me up. I was judging myself on my title in the firm I was working for at the time, and the climb to the next level in the organization. My health was a hot mess during that time, and as I was approaching 30, I assessed my situation and decided to resign from my job and start over.
Taking risks in my career was not an issue for me, because I have faith I could always find a way earn what I needed to live. I had dedicated my 20’s to building up my skill set and “proven my worth”, I felt it was time for me to dig a little deeper and find something that filled me up, and allowed me to thrive in other areas of my life. I wanted a higher level of fulfillment, just didn’t know to apply that term to my life quite yet.
At that time, I left the Bay Area, and moved to Denver, Colorado to slow down a bit. Back then, Denver was not the bustling town it is today, so I felt like a big fish in a small pond and I knew if I earned half of my income, I would still have an abundant life. Fortunately, I was able to find contract work that enabled me to make the same six figures I was making in the Bay Area. This gave me the flexibility of how I chose to spend my time, and where I wanted to invest my money. What I didn’t realize I had built as a habit, to get clear on what I wanted, achieved it, and then would periodically assess what fit and what didn’t so I could pivot when necessary. The pivot happened often, and still does today.
After years of my own career and life integration management, I would stretch my goals when needed and outline what I thought I wanted, and as an achiever make it happen to the letter. I was crystal clear about my vision, and it would come to be. In certain cases, however, I did not quite master understanding and recognizing what filled me up to let go of what no longer served me to make room for what does. The stress would build up, and I would feel horrible in what seemed to be a successful endeavor. Can you relate? A confusion and almost a sense of shame comes into play when you feel so wrong about achieving something that looks good on paper, but doesn’t feel good in your heart and soul.
When those moments occur, I try to come up with a method that can give me clarity on what I can do almost immediately to change my state and jump into action. Using scales to measure what something means to you, is the easiest way to articulate where you are right now, and also shows you what needs to change.
The Fulfillment Factor Assessment Exercise
Grab a piece of paper and draw the first column to be twice the size of the second column, add a third column the same size as the second.
- In Column A, write down all the activities you do in life. I mean everything! From the time you wake up on Monday to the time you go to bed the following Sunday. Take your time listing this out before you go to the next step.
- In Column B score how fulfilling each one is, 1 being the least fulfilled you have ever felt, and 10 being the highest level of fulfillment.
- In Column C put the letter L for Low Fulfillment on anything you scored under a 7, and then put a F, next to any activity that had the score of 8 and up.
Now that you have your data set, let’s look at it together. This allows you to see first hand what is really going on in your life, your career, you relationships, your business, your family, your commitments, etc. that fill you up. It allows you to assess and realize what pushes you forward, and what is holding you back.
What did you notice? How does it feel when you look at the lower scored items? What are some things you can do about the items that have a lower score? How can you do more of the things that fill you up? Is there anything you can jump into action on to up-level your fulfillment factor right now.
Your Fulfillment Factor is key to understand because it helps you easily identify what to let go of, delegate, stop doing that has a low score, and realize that if you just dialed it up on the items that fill you up, you would to lead a thriving life. Having an easy way to measure what is going on in your world, helps you decide what you need to take action on with ease. When I use this exercise with my clients it brings a lot of “aha” moments on simple things that need to change in order to build a fulfilling life.
I hope this tool will make it easier for you to shift into what fills you up, and leave what isn’t working behind.