The other day I got the following questions: It seems that you are pleased in whatever roles you end up in. It seems that it does not matter if you are the CEO or an employee, how is this?
For me it is an easy question to answer, I find interest in both a narrow field of study and expanding my horizon to a broader field. Therefore, I am generally not bored at my work. The mantra “once boss, always boss” belongs to the past. I wish more executive leaders understood that the leadership role is only for loan for a period om time. My identity lies in who I am as a person and what I can contribute professionally with, not what title or position I have. Today people often imagine that the dream job is well paid job as director where you have a lot of freedom and a low workload and just move paper from one tray to another tray. . “the bosses only work from 9 to 16”. Which of course is not correct.
Yes, we need a job that pays our bills and most of us has probably dreamed that we had a bit more money. So, we could afford a newer car, goes on a more expensive vacation, or have a bigger house, or have a cabin by the sea or on the mountain. etc. Although, financial security is among most top career priorities. Research shows that the feeling of happiness increases with higher income to a tipping point, after this the feeling of happiness begins to go decline, and we become less happy. The study was conducted at Purdue University in Indiana, USA and shows that the magic limit for how much money we need to be emotionally happy is between $ 47,000 and $ 59,000 a year.
I believe that a huge contributor to our “unhappiness”, is that we compare us with others, which in turn affects our feelings of happiness. I have spent time teaching my children not to compare themselves to others. There will always be some who are better and others who are poorer. No matter where we are on the “social ladder”, most people will compare oneself to one or the other. This comparison is undoubtedly something that affect our feeling of happiness. The more materialistic we become, the more we compare us with others in a similar economic level to feel better off or worse off. In other words, we will never be satisfied. So, it is about being able to settle down and be happy with what we have and be able to appreciate what one has.
Maybe the wisest career advice in history is 2500 years old, Aristotle declared, “Where the needs of the world and your talents cross, there lies your vocation.”
Aim to be a wider achiever, instead if a higher achiever. For some reason, in our western culture, we must make it as high as possible on the career ladder to be seen successful. Let us look for inspiration from the renaissance generalists, Leonardo da Vinci, who painted one day, did some mechanical engineering the next day, followed by a few anatomy experiments in the weekend. Today this is called being a ‘portfolio worker’, one who can manage several jobs simultaneously often as a consultant or freelancer. There is no denying that our career makes up a large portion of our life. We spend at least 40 hours per week at the workplace. We often see our co-workers more than any of our friends and family members.
It is totally normal to feel unhappy and unmotivated during periods of work. Therefore, it is about finding your interest in any tasks in any position or outside our work. Either we can dig into a special field or we can expand our horizon and seek new knowledge or seek outside fulfilment. I, myself have gone into detail as a real nerd, while other times I have expanded my horizons by seeking and gained new knowledge or found fulfilment outside my work. Personally, I have found fulfilment in voluntary and charitable work and to seek new knowledge in new areas to have a wider perspective.
My answer to the question how I find happiness in all whatever role I end up in, is that I threat life as journey, not a destination.
I try to:-
- Define a personal mission and live it each day.
- Constantly set and re-set goals.
- Make a specific goal to improve myself, every single day.
- Try to be grateful – it could always be a worse.
- Try not to passive – I take and seek new initiatives.
- I find new subject and try to learn something new. .
- I try to build positive relationships.
- I try not to take life to seriously and understand that life is never greener on the other side
- Treat life as a journey instead of acting like it was a race to a destination.