Self Expression Magazine

Face the Right Way: Looking for Direction at Work

By Shrinkingthecamel

file591263254235

Guest Blog from Dr. Stephen Payne

Peter lowers his head with a slow shake. “Frankly,” he says, “I’m bored to the point of mental numbness… And I know I shouldn’t be; it’s a good job.” Peter tells me this because I coach him in business leadership. “In spite of all the accolades and great bonuses for my team, I get nothing out of this place.” He glances up at me: “Do you think I should look for another job?”

“I’m surprised,” I say, because I am. “Can you give me a little more to go on?”

Deep sigh… “I’m sick to death of days crammed with meetings where I sit with the same people, with the same attitudes, and the same predictable problems — especially when it comes to doing a quality job. I find myself gritting my teeth in meetings. It’s all such a grind.”

Perhaps you relate to Peter. Maybe you’ve felt that wide workaday gap between the inspiration of new challenges and feeling completely uninspired by monotonous routine. If so, experience tells me if you conclude that you are fated to sit forever stuck on the lower end of that continuum — the monotonous routine end — it will likely produce extreme reactions that, frankly, no one needs.

new challenges _________________________ monotonous routine

My heart goes out to Peter as I sense his emptiness. “Sounds pretty serious Peter,” I say as a phrase from a verse somewhere in the book of Isaiah keeps repeating in my mind:

Turn to Me and be saved…

I know that for some time Peter has been turned to seek rapid financial rewards and career progressions. He has received them so often that nothing else satisfies and emptiness overwhelms him. It’s a form of burnout. He has become blind to the idea that his true work purpose is to serve. Turning to self is turning the wrong way. It inevitably produces an unproductive, dissatisfied emotional state — a downer for Peter’s spirit, and possibly for everyone around him. As his trusted advisor my job is to get him to understand this before he makes career decisions he might regret.

Fortunately, I am prepared. This is a common problem and I’ve seen it before. I pass a card with six statements on it to Peter. “I want you to calibrate where you are today. Read down this list carefully,” I say, “then tell me which statement describes you today.” [You can do this exercise yourself; I encourage you to read all six statements before you choose.]

Wounded: I really dislike what this organization stands for.

Unaware: Things just happen here and somehow I move forward.

Learning: I try to help situations by wanting the best for everyone.

Exhibiting: In many situations, I look for ways to keep us all on track.

Leading: I always look for solutions that make us better and take us all much further.

Mastering: I’m certain the best solutions emerge whatever the situation.

Peter’s attitude changes rapidly as he reads the card. “I’ve been facing the wrong way,” he says. “I’ve been fixated on the company instead of looking at my place in the company…”

I nod. “So…where are you today?” I ask.

“I’m somewhere between “Learning and Exhibiting,” Peter says. “And I think I see what I can to do to make things better.”

May I ask which way you are facing today? Are you expecting your work to deliver something better to you, or are you working so that great things will come about through you? If you want inspiration, joy, contentment, promotion, increased sales, great colleagues, and everything you can ever need on your journey, it’s the only direction you can face. There’s no activity at work that is not rewarding when you face the right way.

Peter rises to leave, then pauses: “Say, can I keep that card? I’d like to be able to use it again if I lose track of my real purpose here at work.”

“Absolutely,” I say, and slide the card across the desk. “We’ll talk more about this soon…”

Back in my office later I look up the full quotation. It’s Isaiah 45:22:

Look to Me, and be saved, all you ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other.

Not a promotion, not a pay raise, not a bonus, not a great boss, not even a great job or brilliant performance appraisal ….simply no other.

Image by morgueFile


You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Airbus A330-200, Thomas Cook Airlines

    Airbus A330-200, Thomas Cook Airlines

    @ San Francisco International Airport, CA October 2018 Starting in May 2017, Thomas Cook began operating two flights per week between SFO and Manchester, UK... Read more

    The 09 December 2018 by   Htam
    PHOTOGRAPHY, SOCIETY
  • Caroling Party

    Caroling Party

    Last night we hosted our fourth annual caroling party. I'm not a big Christmas gift-giving person, so our gift to everyone is doughnuts, hot chocolate, hot... Read more

    The 09 December 2018 by   Sherwoods
    FAMILY, PARENTING
  • Struggling to Afford Insulin

    Struggling Afford Insulin

    People who need insulin for their type 1 or type 2 diabetes are skimping on the shots because the drug has become so expensive. A study this week in the... Read more

    The 09 December 2018 by   Dietdoctor
    DIET & WEIGHT, HEALTH, HEALTHY LIVING, MEDICINE
  • 8 Guiding Principles For Pursuing A Winning Venture

    Guiding Principles Pursuing Winning Venture

    Every entrepreneur has an idea for transforming a market with innovative new technology, or transforming society with a new process. Read more

    The 09 December 2018 by   Martin Zwilling
    BUSINESS, CAREER
  • Nutrition and Your Doctor

    Nutrition Your Doctor

    There are certain things that doctors are great at. How to prescribe medications? Yes. How to do surgery? Yes. Nutrition and weight loss? No, definitely not. Yo... Read more

    The 09 December 2018 by   Dietdoctor
    DIET & WEIGHT, HEALTH, HEALTHY LIVING, MEDICINE
  • Sunday 9th December: Annie Chinery

    Sunday December: Annie Chinery

    I'd like to begin this blogpost by saying that I do love my mother-in-law very much. My own mother died shortly before my marriage, and Ma Walker did exactly th... Read more

    The 09 December 2018 by   Kirsty Stonell Walker
    CULTURE
  • Indoor Air Pollution: Are You Protected?

    Most of us think of big cities and smog clouds when contemplating air pollution. However, indoor air pollution can be just as prevalent and dangerous, if not... Read more

    The 09 December 2018 by   Meet Rv