We are all familiar with the outward symbols of success; job titles, dining at expensive restaurants, driving smart cars, high-end clothes and the latest tech. These are often desired to satisfy an inner search for happiness, fulfilment and self-confidence. Unfortunately this kind of satisfaction doesn’t seem to last long.
Rather, an enduring sense of success seems to be more assured when we excel at expressing and demonstrating our talents, skills and competencies. It is the good inner feeling we experience when we are acknowledged and recognised for sharing the best of ourselves.
Since we spend most of our waking time at work, this surely must be one of the most likely places to experience success.
Start by identifying those things you enjoy most about work. It could be certain tasks like creative problem solving, team building, or simply ensuring that things are done correctly – or it could include being persuasive, planning and organising. Think about where you are able to incorporate more of the activities you really enjoy into your current role.
Essentially then, this may be your entry point to further explore your unexpressed inner potential. When you take a job simply because you need it, there could very well be a poor match between your full potential and the essential job requirements. It is about finding more fulfilment by identifying opportunities for natural self-expression. If this is a bit difficult to identify, try to think about those activities you enjoy in your free time. If it is reading and learning, could this translate into volunteering to do some research? If you love preaching on Sundays; guiding and caring for people, could this talent be expressed in some sort of mentoring function for someone needing it in the work place? Managers are likely to be unaware of these hidden passions and talents, until you show them.
Being willing to share your ideas with your manager about how you wish to bring more of your potential to your job may just unlock the door to further success.
As we said the real motivation to strive for success is to achieve enduring happiness and fulfilment. Sadly, when we look more closely at the lives of the rich and famous, it seems that for many their lives are far from happy. We read about estranged families, crippling addictions and serious health issues. This is where we introduce the all-important state of coherence. Clearly they have lost the all-important quality of coherence in their lives. That simply means acting with the understanding that we need to care for all aspects of our lives, including the complex relationship between our hearts, minds, bodies, and the environment in which we live.
Going forward month by month we will offer practices to enhance your coherence as you strive for your success. Start today with these practices which will become good habits. In the next newsletter we will offer more. Then at the end of the year you will be able to look back, acknowledge your achievements, and celebrate who you are becoming.
Here is your habit for this month to build mental and emotional coherence. On your way to work each morning begin to look out for two things that give you a positive feeling. Now as you dwell on them, fully experience the emotion of gratitude – deep inside. It is one of the most significant ingredients of happiness. People who achieve enduring success tend to cultivate the habit of seeking out and celebrating the good. A positive outlook on life does not mean denying of any bad things, it is just a shift of emphasis of how you look at life – noticing the good stuff with gratitude. But beware, like the smile of the Cheshire cat, some people may even think you are hiding some secret.
Here is one habit to build social coherence. Think about all the people who have helped you to get to where you are in life. Since there is deep satisfaction in sharing success with others, the quality of your relationships will enhance your coherence and experience of success. Choose three work colleagues who you deeply appreciate. Now look out for any genuine opportunity to compliment them, or thank them for their help, or just let them know why you appreciate them.
Start this month with two easy habits to build physical coherence; resourcing your body with the vitality to achieve success.
1. Drink at least one litre of clean, fresh water each day. Since you need to be well-hydrated for your brain to work at its best, ensure you take small sips throughout the day.
2. Cut out sugar on three days of the week – it is simply not good for overall health. Although sugar does lift the mood by giving an energy boost, this only has a temporary effect. It can be rapidly followed by feeling low and lethargic, thereby hindering success. Understanding that sugar needs to be avoided, you may not be aware that manufacturers often sneak it into all sorts of food, and not just the obvious sweets and cookies. Make a habit of reading the ingredients on the labels of foodstuffs such as flavoured yogurt, pasta sauce, granola bars and peanut butter. This will give you a better idea of where sugar is hidden so that you can make better choices.
So start a new habit; for three days of the week choose to avoid sugar loaded foods like sweets, chocolates, cookies, cake or granola bars.