Before Jumping Ship...
Many executives are concerned about losing their passion at some point in their career. The concern can be attributed to a midlife crisis or can be a result of a personal or professional setback such as a critical illness or a loss followed by a less than positive return-to-work experience. Often the default decision of changing jobs, switching careers, or starting a new business appears to be the only way out, but caution is wise in these uncertain times.
Most executive coaches, including myself, will coach you to look inward before making a drastic decision. Perhaps the problem isn’t the job, or the management, or the business. Often, there is something much deeper within you that is yearning for more meaning. This could be the opportunity of your lifetime to re-examine your thinking, beliefs, or level of engagement as you strive to make work (and life) more meaningful.
Middle age is accompanied by a heightened awareness of one’s sense of meaning. Psychologist Erik Erikson described this stage of life as one seeking productivity and generativity. Add a succession of events that contribute to a setback and you have a recipe for disconnection with one's sense of meaning.
You’ve probably seen this in your own life: You want to help others, provide reliable goods or services, make an impact on your community, and provide a comfortable existence for your family. You want to feel that what you do is worthwhile. You want to feel that who you are is valued.
This is a good time to review your values and purpose. Your coach, mentor, or trusted advisor will make the experience more effective. Possibly not fun or easy, but definitely the insights will be worth the effort.
- What was initially attractive about your current work (job, or business)?
- When you began your career, what were your expectations, your hopes, your dreams?
- In the early days, how did work excite you and make life fascinating?
- What has changed?
People are often surprised by their answers, having forgotten their early enthusiasm.
To rekindle your drive, explore three key personal-development components with your coach or trusted advisor:
- Identify your core values.
- Know and manage yourself well. Explore your emotional intelligence.
- Determine how your values fit with who you are today.
Subscribe to Maestro's Notes - Re-Ignite and download the workbook, Personal Quality System, Personal Leadership for Peak Performance as a guide for your personal development.
Assessments and Coaching
This may be a good opportunity to take some assessments with your coach or advisor. Few people know their strengths well. Popular assessments include Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and the Big Five Personality Test (you can take a free version online by clicking on the link). Check out the assessment Values in Action Inventory of Strengths.
Contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about how the Fascination Advantage® Assessment & Report will reconnect with how you fascinate the world around you.
Contact me directly at email@example.com, if you are interested in an EQi assessment.
I find the wisest people are those who use their feelings of malaise to find out what drives them, what strengths they possess, and what gives them a sense of fascination and meaning. Those people use executive coaching to rekindle their spirits.