“Don’t ask what the world needs, ask what makes you come alive, and do that.”
~Howard Thurman

Simply put, we are more invested, and therefore generally more successful, when we do what makes us come alive.

For many of us, what makes us come alive may be something that the world needs. My oldest child just finished college and is working for a not-for-profit called College Possible, helping low-income kids make it through the college application process. These kids are generally first-generation students, from families who have fled to America, and they most likely would fall through many cracks. This work may be something that the world needs (I believe it is), and it is certainly something that makes my oldest child come alive.

I watch my oldest child, full of fervor and determination, and I know that following a passion or working at something that you fully believe in is a certain way to increase engagement and staying power. It’s clear that when our hearts as well as our heads are involved in how we spend our time and what we do, there is strength and resolve to do and give whatever is necessary to get things done.

So what does that mean as we look to our own lives and work, as well as the lives and work of the people we lead? We coach our clients to do work they care about or to find something they care about in the work they do. To look for the job, or the aspects of a job, that make them come alive and to find more ways to do more of those aspects. And we coach our clients to do the same things for the people on their team. How can they ignite passion in their colleagues and direct reports? How can they help those that work for and with them find what lights them up? How can they help those that work for and with them bring more of what lights them up into their daily lives and tasks?

It can be a tough search, and it can seem daunting to bring our “passion igniters” into our work and lives, but it is a search and an effort that can yield great results. When we spend time doing what makes us come alive, we are more alive. We have more to give; we have more excitement for our work; and we have greater results.

What do you do that makes you come alive? How can you do more of it?
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If you enjoyed this post, you can read more like it in our book, The Power of Thoughtful Leadership: 101 Minutes To Being the Leader You Want To Be, available on Amazon.

If you want more “aliveness” in your life, contact Lisa at lkohn@chatsworthconsulting.com.

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