Does your business or career fulfil your reason for being?

Uncategorized Jan 16, 2018

Yesterday was a day known as Blue Monday, the third Monday in January, apparently the saddest day of the year. There are numerous reasons- the joy of Christmas may be forgotten but the debts remain, income may be slow to arrive but tax payments may be due, the weather is cold with limited light and Spring seems a long way off. Plus those inspirational New Year’s resolutions may have already been abandoned and old habits resumed. It can also be the time when we want to make our great plans for 2018 but perhaps doubts emerge about whether our business or career is really on the right track.

You may have seen something like the diagram before, but it seemed particularly relevant today. Ikigai is a Japanese concept that means a reason for being, our purpose and joy from life. It is based around experiencing all the four elements of what you love, what the world needs, what you can be paid for, and what you’re good at. It is possible that you may have elements missing currently and that may be the reason why things don’t feel right somehow. So in many ways what fascinates me are the gaps and how I can support people to transform. Life purpose is easy to dismiss as something that would be nice to achieve “one day”, but I see from both personal experience and working with clients how fundamentally important this is to our wellness and success.

When I first started my working life I essentially focused on one area I was good at (numbers and being analytical) and then began a journey to acquire further skills and knowledge to perform my job in accountancy well. My salary was low as a trainee but over time I progressed and was reasonably paid as there was a clear pain point and need for accountancy services. It completely fitted the description of “Profession”. In all honesty it wasn’t what I loved but that seemed quite normal in the world of work. Over time that profession became the focus for my business and eventually that created a sense of love. I had clients, team members and a sense of purpose to make the business successful. But I still didn’t fully bring in other aspects of who I really was. I loved creativity, ideas, nurturing people to achieve their potential, a sense of freedom and being outdoors.

My perspective shifted radically when I experienced the stress of a difficult split from a former business partner and then developed a long-term health condition that limited my ability to work. This created both a loss of confidence in my skills and a loss of love for the business. Initially I compensated by finding some voluntary opportunities to make a difference – mentoring and coaching young people and business owners. This was effectively a rewarding vocation or a passion as the payment element was missing.

How could I include all this mentoring and coaching as part of my paid work, and keep developing my skills, and create a business I truly loved again, and make a valuable difference in the world? To cut a long story short it involved bringing all aspects of my whole self and my experiences into work and being in authentic alignment. It includes creativity, wellness, transformational shifts, nurturing and supporting women who might initially feel overwhelmed & exhausted to achieve success on their terms., the opportunity to experience coaching and mindfulness in nature.

My wish for you is that you stop to consider where you might be out of alignment with your life purpose . If you feel uncertain and would appreciate some further help or questions about your own journey, you may want to consider posting any questions in the comments below or enquiring about a free 30 minute clarity call to explore further. I can then send you a link to my online diary.

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