Change — even when unwelcome or unexpected often wakes up those dormant dreams we have buried. I have seen Doctors move to the country to take up organic gardening, Priests who have switched to fulfilling careers as lecturers and educators and Housewives who emerged from the years of raising children to release their gifts in writing and counselling.
Do you live in happiness or misery? it’s your choice…
There is a story of a 92-year-old lady who was moving into a nursing home. As she was being wheeled down the corridor, the attendant began to describe her new room. “I love it” the old woman gushed. “But you haven’t even seen the room yet” the attendant reminded her. “That doesn’t have anything to do with it,” she replied. “Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time. Whether I like my room or not doesn’t depend on how the furniture is arranged. It’s how I arrange my mind.”
There’s an important principle in that little story. Much of our success is decided in advance or “arranged in your mind.” Mindset or our phycology is the most powerful tool we process and few or us harness it’s amazing power. Circumstances will never determine your amount of happiness. Circumstances only highlight who you already are. Many times a career path starts because of circumstances rather than priorities. Family expectations, chance occurrences, a friendly teacher, or the desire for money can lead us down a career path that’s ultimately unfulfilling. It’s tough to make choices at 18 that will be meaningful at 45. Just recently, I saw a 48-year-old client who opened with the comment “John, I’m tired of living my life based on the decisions I made as an 18-year-old.”
Every single day you have the luxury of waking and deciding who you’ll be.
If your work life is not providing a sense of meaning, purpose and fulfilment, draw that line in the sand. Decide what your ideal day would look like. How would you love to spend your time? What skills you would use? Money is ultimately never enough compensation for investing one’s time and energy. There must be a sense of meaning and accomplishment and yet a surprising thing frequently happens on the way to fulfilment and worthy contribution:
Rather than learning to live on “noodles and spaghetti” there is often the release of a financial flood. It’s a myth that if you do what you love, then you’ll have to be content to never make any money.
I believe the opposite is true. When we look at the leaders in any industry profit or non profit today, who have made it to the top of their field the vast majority love what they do; it’s their passion, their drive and never say die attitude that has brought them through the challenges and obstacles life delivers as they work towards their dreams and goals.
We are all called to lead in the many roles we play in our daily lives.
People need us to show them the way – impart our knowledge, wisdom and experience, speak the truth and treat them with respect, love and kindness.