Now that Q1 2014 is underneath your belt, do you feel satisfied with your performance, or do wish you were accomplishing more? And, if it’s the latter, do you have a long list of excuses? It’s easy to convince yourself as to why this may be happening … you’re not getting along with your co-workers, you feel like you’re not being tapped for your true expertise, or the campaigns you’re working on are not going as well as you had imagined. Perhaps, you’re just not feeling at your 100% best lately, and you have to drag yourself to work everyday. Well, guess what, any one of these reasons and more could be on the list. However, you shouldn’t address the excuses until you get to the heart of the matter. It could be the your passion factor is slipping. Don’t feel alone, it happens to everyone.
There’s one thing that’s always helped me when it comes to passion and my happiness . It’s passion realignment. Getting your passion in check and back on course is the very first step to feeling like you’re able to achieve your goals. When you reassess, rediscover or even find a new passion, then you’ll have the drive and motivation to get you past any of the excuses mentioned earlier. You will quickly find yourself propelling forward, regardless of what may have looked like lousy circumstances. In fact, if you successfully reassess and / or realize your true passion, then suddenly none of the circumstances will ever appear as lousy as you may have thought before.
I think about what drives me all of the time. It’s people and relationships. Knowing that I can interact and learn but also educate and help people to connect and grow. That’s my driving force. However, every so often, I too need to step back for a quick passion reassessment to make sure I’m maximizing what’s important with five simple questions:
- Are you focused on your core skills and competencies, or going off in directions that move you away from your area of expertise? Losing focus can decrease your drive and passion. There are times we will always try new directions, but don’t lose sight of what makes you feel great because you excel in these areas. When I left marketing agency life back in 2011 to become a communications consultant I was able to reignite my passion by focusing on strategic planning with the C-Suite. Running an agency removed me from the work that I loved so much.
- Are you fragmented, spreading yourself thin over a number of projects? They say creative people tend to have many different efforts going on at once. However, too many initiatives can lead to a lot of little efforts spread out, rather than really concentrating and giving your best effort in a couple or a few areas. The best answer here is to learn to say a simple word, “No.”
- Is your network growing and are you taking advantage of these great connections? There are so many intelligent, passionate people out there, whether they are in the PR world or any other industry. When I find them, I want to maximize the connection, so I can continue to learn and grow and also feel energized. They say that “passion breeds passion.”
- Are you using your resources properly to help you to achieve your goals? There’s nothing wrong with taking advantage of the smart people in your life. We surround ourselves with intelligent people, colleagues, peers, family and friends. We do this for a reason. When they offer to help, take them up on it. There’s synergy in numbers. And, know that these folks will call on you at some point to help in the same fashion.
- Do you need to take a PLAY day? It’s the best thing to get refreshed and refocused. When you can step away and just clear your mind, you go back into your work and life ready to tackle the challenges that are ahead. Stepping away, being unplugged and completely removed from your day-to-day activities is the best way to refuel the engine. Be good to that engine and it will run longer.
Answering these five simple questions allows you to reassess your passion, and move forward with renewed energy. These aren’t the only questions to answer, but they are certainly a good start. How do you reassess your passion and is realignment in your future?