A huge study recently revealed that what makes us happiest at work (over the pay cheque) is the sense of purpose that a job gives us. When I think about all the jobs I have had over the years, I ponder over the times I felt the most content.
Those times were when I felt that there was meaning to my day, times that I was genuinely helping to make an impact. When we know we are helping others, it adds meaning and value to our lives.
You might be thinking -” how can I do that in my role”? Perhaps you don’t work. Well here is an example.
Help a new colleague, member of a social club or a new parent feel welcome. I never forget the words an old colleague, who remains a good friend, said to me:
“Jojo, you made me feel so welcome on my first day. You were the first to come and talk to me and have a bit of banter”.
The biggest cause of stress in life is not down to money or lack of it. It is down to our relationships. Our relationships at home, with family, friends and colleagues. When we do things that make others happy, we are happier. Being an asshole actually has very little benefits.
Yesterday I was on a business bootcamp course with Enterprenural spark. A small part of the day involved some chat about Eagles vs Ducks. I had never heard this analogy but I found it pretty amusing. A duck grunts and quacks away. An eagle rises above it and soars.
We are all capable of being a duck or an eagle. If you follow me on Instagram you will know that this month I have been using music to help me gain perspective. So if I am stuck in a traffic jam or bored of doing the dishes, I blast some good tunes, sing and dance. I rise above it. Yes, I cringe a bit when I post the videos. Some ducks will watch and quack quack away:
“What’s that all about – nay need for that”???!!!
I don’t care. It feels fantastic.
I got sick and tired of being that moany, grumpy duck of a Mum. Being an eagle takes practice and patience though. It is very easy to become extremely critical and pessimistic which drags others down. That attitude doesn’t add value, nor does it provide meaning.
When it comes to parenting: the pay sucks, but if we are talking meaning, it gets top marks. My attitude towards my kids can either drag them down or lift them up. I want to lift them up as often as possible. So one of the ways I do this is by playing more music at home and in the car. My kids see me having fun. My positive energy bounces off them.
Then there are days I quack away (cough cough hormones, sleep deprivation, trying to juggle life) and we all feel rubbish. Sometimes life gets tough or we struggle to find our balance. This makes us stressed and sad. We require extra support.
It’s 2017 and it’s time to keep it real. We can’t pretend that the bad stuff isn’t happening. Life is full of ups and downs and when we find the strength to speak openly about the hard stuff – it helps us.
We all have our own battles to face. I have walked through the streets of Africa. I have worked and am working with so many people who have really had it tough. People that amaze me. They find a way to swim when it feels like it would be all too easy to sink.
Let’s work hard at finding our purpose and surrounding ourselves with people who inspire us. People who have worked hard to pick themselves up. Go out and make an impact. Drown out the duck in you and reach for the sky.
On that note, i’m off to blast a bit of Jessie J….. the upload will be on my insta later if you want to quack about it or join in the banter
Everybody look to their left
Everybody look to their right
Can you feel that, yeah
We’re paying with love tonight
It’s not about the money money money
We don’t need your money money money