Many of us have been taught to work hard, keep our noses to the grind stone and push ourselves to go to work everyday so that one day we can retire and live the good life. That’s what our parents did. It worked well for them.
Yet, in America, over 55% of people report being dissatisfied with their work. The average American spends nearly 1,700 hours per year and for salaried employees and business owners, it’s a whole lot more. The reality is that many people are unhappy with their current line of work, but they keep pushing on – many to their breaking point.
Now, if you’re one of those people who works long hours, chances are that there are aspects of your career that you really enjoy. These aspects, in edition to your work ethic, keep you coming to work everyday. They drive you to bring your “A game” to everything you do. Pay attention to the aspects you enjoy. You’ll want to keep these in mind for later. In addition, I bet you’re the heart and soul of your company in many ways and you are firmly aware of the big impact you are making on the company you work for or own.
So what happens when you take a driven individual such as yourself and make a connection to your personal purpose – the very mission that drives you to be the best person you were meant to be? The answer is obvious really, you become an unstoppable force. Nothing gets in your way of accomplishing your mission.
Bring to mind Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX and co-founder of Tesla and SolarCity. What compels him to go for outlandish goals such as reducing the “risk of human extinction” by “making life multiplanetary”? Just who does he think he is? This is clearly not how normal people think. Yet for those who see the big picture of why they’re here, living this life, with a particular set of experiences and talents, this goal of Elon’s doesn’t seem so outlandish.
There are many people like Elon who have claimed outlandish goals. Take, for example, Thomas Edison, whose dreamed of illuminating the world with his incandescent bulb. There were many who tried, even some who succeeded, but Edison’s bulb design is what prevailed. The Wright Brothers created many skeptics when they claimed they would would create a flying machine that could be controlled and powered. People thought they were crazy. Steve Jobs told the world his mission was to make a contribution to the world by making tools for the mind that advance humankind. He was fired from his own company, yet even that did not stop him.
The biggest difference between these incredible people and everyone else is that they connected with their purpose. They felt their purpose so deep in their bones that they were willing to do whatever it took to make their ideas come to life. Regardless of the obstacles, failures, fears and outside criticism, they relentlessly pursued their goals. Thank God they did! We have them to thank for many of the conveniences that have become so common today that we can take them for granted.
You know what else I notice, so often we let fear hold us back. We don’t allow ourselves to stretch and grow into something bigger and more important because we’re worried about things like failure, finances and family. We create obstacles in our minds about all the reasons why we can’t. We worry so greatly about all the ways we might fail including at the very job we desperately want. We think things like: perhaps we’re not qualified, perhaps we’re not ready, perhaps it will be a complete waste of time to try.
Fear is the thief of desire. That part of us which is ready to expand, grow and stretch is asking us to go for it. Reach for that next level! Go on, you can do it, it says. Yet, we ignore it. We pretend we can’t hear that voice and we dull out the desire to do something more. We become numb to the desires of our heart because we don’t believe they are possible.
If that’s your story, you have an opportunity to open your mind to a new possibility. Whether you’re willing to admit it or not, that voice is getting louder. It’s causing problems for you and disrupting your passion for what you’re currently doing. Your body is giving you signs that the stress is taking its toll whether in the form of heartburn, digestive issues, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or fatigue. Perhaps you’re experiencing depression or anxiety and the very thought of work is keeping you up at night.
No matter how it’s showing up for you, that aspect of yourself that is ready to do something more is trying to get your attention. It’s not going to stop until you listen. Ignoring it will do you no good.
So here’s how you can get started. Picture in your mind a job or purpose you secretly would love to pursue. With it front in center, start writing down any fears you have about going for it. Imagine that there is an opportunity to go for it right now, what is your mind telling you? Take a minute and write them all down. Here are a few examples to get you started…
What if I fail?
What if I go broke?
What if others say I’m an idiot for trying?
Whatever those honest fears are inside, give voice to them. Let them all flow out uncensored. Then, when they are all out on paper and you’re starting to feel lighter, begin a new list. Take each of those fears and turn them into their opposite. Such as…
What if I don’t fail?
What if I don’t go broke?
What if others say I’m intelligent for trying?
Now, keep going, add some more that weren’t on your fears list. List every positive thought that comes to mind. Let it all flow until you feel like you’ve let all the ideas out you’re complete.
How do you feel? Hopefully, this secret desire of yours feels more possible now. That’s good! Because the reality is that if you can see it in your mind, this job you would love, then it is possible for you. It may take hard work and courage to get there but the good news is that every problem has a solution and every question an answer. If you want this job bad enough, with patience and persistence, it will be yours. Just make sure this job you’re shooting for is worth it. If it stretches you to be a bigger, more brilliant version of your current self, it’s a good step in the right direction.
For ways to identify your purpose and clarify what your ideal job is please visit my website at www.danielleisaac.com.