A Leap of Faith
I have been reading Rick Smith's LEAP lately.
Not only has it helped me understand my true passions and strengths in a new light, but also helped me leverage them in my current position. According to me, the goal of life is happiness. Since our work fills most part of our lives, it is very important to be intrinsically satisfied with it. I have experienced this first hand in my previous jobs. It's hard to invent a purpose in work that is not emotionally rewarding. Which implies that it's hard to be successful doing something 9 hours a day and like it when you clearly know that you don't. (Read this & this to know more) We cannot expect to make the right choices at every point of our lives. We cannot control which school we go to as a child, we cannot control the learning environment throughout our teenage; & here in India it's even harder to decide your professional education (Bachelors) as you're decision is largely controlled by family expectations. A view precisely demonstrated in 3 Idiots. So unless you are a true maverick, your career is more or less decided by failure synonym called Destiny.
Even though the situation seems desperate, there are ways in which we can take small steps to identify our sweet spot (Primary Color). The closer we are to our sweet spot, more successful and happier we will be.
I agree with Rick's interpretation that even though one might be good in their current position, there is a difference between doing something you love & being good at something you just do.When you do something you love you're "OFF THE CHARTS" not merely good. I believe that success and recognition is a side effect of loving your work. We are the best of ourselves when we are with our true calling. Once we start this process of self –discovery and start aligning our lives in that direction, everything else falls in place. We start meeting the right people, we start finding right opportunities and most of all, work starts becoming more enjoyable. It's only then that we turn problems into opportunities. This is more of a realization rather than empty words in a management book. There is an important distinction between knowing something & realizing it. For e.g. all the smokers know that smoking is harmful, they continue to do so because they haven't realized how dangerous it is. Those who do, stop it easily those who don't might make serious attempts but eventually fall back, unless a direct threat changes their course.
The most important thing in life is happiness; we want a good salary, a high paying job, a car, a jet, new house, all of it to make us happy. We even take drastic measures to do certain things that we aren't so sure about but if they make our families happy we are ready to endure the pain. In their happiness lays ours. The pursuit of wealth is somehow confused with the pursuit of happiness. Over time, we forget what the actual goal was and only a wealth wireframe remains. You can actually see through it and know that it's empty.
But, what if we have the courage to take a Leap of faith? What happens if we find an intersection in all this? Most of us don't do this, because we aren't sure of the outcome. Most of us are scared because all of it seems too big and too unrealistic. Feeling of what if it doesn't is more powerful than what if it does. Instead of looking at the small strokes that make up the big picture, we are overwhelmed by the picture itself.
I believe that the fundamental issue here is not knowledge but courage. A normal life is already complex because of our responsibilities that we find hard to comprehend change. On top of that, change is misinterpreted as risk and Risk is misrepresented as probability, Probability is associated with probable failure, failure is associated with inevitable pain. Instead of taking the leap, we are surrounded by so many "what ifs" that staying on the current course seems far more logical/doable than changing sails. Little do we realize, what we misjudge as success is the prison of inevitability, a handcuff of our own making & we are reluctant to reach for the key.
I don't expect Leap to change my life forever, that will be setting wrong expectations, but I know for sure that it will help me start thinking in the right direction. I hope that I summon the courage to take the Leap. I hope that you do too.