For about a year or more I was feeling very unfulfilled in my job and work. That is a very odd feeling for me. I have always LOVED what I do… being in education and having the ability to share my passion for all things technology and geeky is awesome. It was weird to feel as if I had no ambition, no drive, no reason to ‘show up’ to work everyday.
Then one day my husband and I were talking about how I was feeling and trying to figure out what was going on with me. He was reading a book called Secrets of a Buccaneer Scholar: How Self Education and the Pursuit of Passion can lead to a Lifetime of Success. He showed me an image in the book that resonated with me. It was the idea of finding where you are engaged in your work. You have two levels one being level of expectations from you or your boss. Higher, you have a level of aspirations. It’s where you want to be or go. If you are working below your expectations you will have a tendency to be worried. Worried of losing your job, perhaps? Worried about not doing well? etc. On the other end of the spectrum if you are working higher than your aspirations you are bored. You have nothing to strive for if you are working above your aspirations. So the key is to work above your expectations while always having a level of aspirations to reach and this will bring engagement.
The image was a preverbal smack in the head. I realized the reason I “lost that lovin’ feeling” was because I stopped reaching higher. I was working above my aspirations. So much to the point that I stopped learning. I stopped reading blogs, using twitter or any other social network for learning. Having this realization, I had to do something about it.
What did I do?
I essentially created a list of things that I was interested in hoping it would lead me to my passions of work again.
I reflected on things I used to love about work.
I reminded my self why I do what I do… It really is for the students. It doesn’t matter how far I am from the classroom, my goal is to improve learning for them.
I created an action plan. How was I going to higher my aspirations? By making them known. I made an appointment with my supervisor and talked with her about my work performance and how I wanted it to change.
I asked to take on/lead a project.
I sank my teeth in to the project and it led me back to wanting to learn more.
How has this affected my outlook?
I find myself asking for input and feedback from my coworkers more often.
I revamped and relaunched my blog. (You are reading it)
I find myself on twitter, Google+, Facebook and other social networks more often to gain more knowledge and SHARE.
I don’t dread going to work in the morning.
Find your passion in work. It makes work a happy place to be.
A quick TED Talk on Success at work.