Feel: Full

The Job Fulfillment Scale and How To Move Your Number

I had a fabulous call on Friday this week with a collection of incredible women from a globally recognized powerhouse of a company.  These are brilliant, passionate, smart women who have collected themselves together in a community in their workplace to connect, grow and expand their network and career options.  We all shared a beautiful energy; I was honored to be a part of it.

During this call, I received a few questions about where to begin when someone is feeling “stuck”.

This “stuck” phenomenon has been coming up a lot lately.

I recently sent out a survey to ask people to give me feedback about their careers.

I want to know about your biggest challenges and what matters most to you at work.

The underlying theme from the survey responses so far has to do with feeling a lack of choices, financial restraints, pressure from family situations, etc. In a word: stuck.

I had a mentor tell me once, after retirement, that the company didn’t pay her to do her job - she loved her job and she would have done the parts she loved for free. The company paid her to do all of the parts of her job she didn’t love.

The work and her joy in it more than balanced her equation.

The equation I’m referencing is about how much work you do that drains you vs. the work you do that fills you up. If the drain is stronger than the fill, your job is likely overwhelming and you remain unfulfilled but, if you can figure out how to tip the scales - there’s magic on the other side.

Take Action:

  1. On a scale of 1-10: Where are you with your Job Fulfillment Score? 1: I’m Empty and 10: Abundantly Full.  Give yourself a score.
  2. Name one thing at work that makes you feel fulfilled: ideas include philanthropy, mentorship, project completion, problem solving, drafting communications, etc.  
  3. Schedule 1 extra hour (more if you can swing it) of this fulfilling thing in your calendar each week for the next 6 weeks. The goal is to move your score up the scale by 1 point.
  4. Execute - Take Action for all 6 weeks: no excuses, no cheating.
  5. Revisit the scale: Did your Job Fulfillment Score go up or down?  
    • If your score went up: Congratulations! You actively found a way to move the scale in a positive direction!
      • The next steps are to either find another fulfilling thing and add that to the schedule or add more time to do the thing you've already found. My only extra piece of advice here is that there can be too much of a good thing so don’t overdo it to the point where it becomes a drain.
    • If your score went down (and you committed to all the actions): Either you didn’t find the right fulfilling thing or you overdid your fulfilling thing and it had the opposite effect. Look for other influencing variables (Did your boss just get back from vacation? Was there a big deadline looming that required overtime? Was your partner or your child sick?) External noise can also be a contributing factor.
      • Go back to the drawing board, be a detective, figure out what didn’t work and try again.  

The magic here is in the small steps. If you can find one thing now that moves you closer to full and away from empty, you gain your power back.

You remind yourself that you can change your situation. 

Eventually as you find things that make you full and commit time to doing them,  you’ll hit the tipping point in your work life, where you find yourself full more often than not. As an added benefit, when you do happen to slip back towards empty, you’ll know exactly how to tip yourself back to the other side.

This week, Feel: Full.