Can’t Get No Satisfaction
Do you know what motivates you? Is it the thrill of adventure? Is it making a difference in the life of someone else? Is it professional accomplishment? Is it fame? Fortune?
If you answered, “I don’t know”, then we have some work to do. You need to wake up and start paying attention to what brings you joy. Or maybe joy is too strong a word – try satisfaction. If, at the end of the day, you feel satisfied – that it was a day well lived – then I’d say whatever you did that day motivates you. I think we’ve started to feel that if we don’t end everyday dancing in the streets, then we must be somehow unhappy. I believe that long-lasting motivation is more about feeling pleased than about doing back flips.
Don’t get me wrong – I’m all about the back flips! There are days that you’ll have those – you win the gold medal, you land a huge account, you take a fabulous trip somewhere, your teenager says she loves you. But if we expect everyday to be a back flip day, we are setting ourselves up for disappointment. And you can’t get to the back flip days without putting in a whole lot of satisfaction (or worse) days. This is about enjoying the journey.
So how do you increase your satisfaction?
1. Decrease the amount of time you spend with people who cause you emotional pain (anger, hurt, worry, etc.). You can’t feel that a day was well-lived if you spent it in pain.
2. Find work that you love or find some aspect of your current job that you love. If you hate what you spend the bulk of your waking hours doing, you are not going to be satisfied. But you can change how you think about your work anytime you choose. You can think about the great people you work with or the skills you are learning or the people you help. Don’t use a bad economy as an excuse to be miserable.
3. Control your destiny. Start each day with a plan – what do YOU want to do with that day? What do you want to get done at work? What do you want to do with your time off? What would give you the most satisfaction if you accomplished it that day? If you don’t have a plan, someone else will make one for you, trust me.
4. Take action on your own behalf. What’s been bugging you? That junk drawer in the kitchen? Clean it out. You’ll be surprised how much satisfaction it will bring you. Susie calls every night and vents about her day and ruins yours? Stop taking her calls. Unless you love her drama, pass on it. Anything that nags at you – if you take care of it, you’ll be more satisfied, I promise.
Imagine – a life with less emotional pain, work you enjoy, a sense of control, less nagging stressors……sounds pretty good to me! Get you some satisfaction!