Several years back I participated in a program called Wantology, a coaching certification program based on getting what you “really” want. It was located in Silicon Valley and our professor was a woman named Kevin. The place was sprinkled with Silicon Valley Internet wizards. I was busy analysing everyone wondering what they wanted and so sure of what I wanted, although definitely not what I needed. It was a strange experience somehow, as most people realised what they didn’t want but more importantly not what they needed.
Case in point: While I was coaching a senior executive with a strong network, who had been working in a global firm for several years, a crossroads had appeared. Unfortunately, the department they were in stopped functioning, the CEO was sacked and reorganisation took hold. Discreet meetings were held with their network who would make sure through the reorganisation that they would get what they wanted. The network asked the Million-dollar question;
What do you want? It was very clear to them, under no circumstances would they take a reduction in salary. The new terms came; they got what they wanted!
Their salary didn’t change, but the job did, along with their responsibilities. No one would be reporting to them and their authority in the new department had been reduced. They became thoroughly depressed. I asked them “how could you get what you want, but not what you needed”
So, I dug around in their psyche & soul and used some emotional intelligence; coaching revealed what they needed was to feel valued, useful, passionate, in- control, and responsible, but the money didn’t offer them that, the money was the illusion of value, what it could buy, and the status it created.
What they eventually learned was that their value came from believing that they made a difference, that they “did” something that made them useful to themselves and to others. They eventually left that position for one that utilised their values and usefulness, they became more in line with their authentic self, they even took a pay cut, because;
“What we want isn’t always what we need”
Although this sounds simple, it can take time to discover what we really need. How does one find out what they need, a good place to start is understanding your core values and beliefs. We do this by self-reflection, insights, inner-work and coaching. We realise the more we know ourselves, the better we can take care of our wants and really get what we need
Alycia Setlin – Founder of Innerwork Dynamics- Inner Leadership & Emotional Intelligence. Masterclass- Women & Leadership in the workforce. Career Coaching that works from within.