My eyes darted around looking for a car barreling toward us. No car. No danger.
My 5-year-old son ran into the grass of our front yard. Grabbed something from the air and came back to me.
“Got it,” he said.
“Got what?” I asked.
He cracked open his hand and whispered something to his dragon. He skipped forward and lead the way to the playground.
I smiled, following behind him.
The greatest gift you can give anyone is fostering their belief in something greater than themselves. It’s what most lives and companies are built upon. The belief that your time isn’t being wasted on something pointless.
When is the last time you encourages someone’s idea to create something, build something, do something that sparks their curiosity?
I mean YOU.
Do you encourage yourself to do work on something that excites you? Or do you hold back because you let that negative inner voice keep you grounded?
You will always be your biggest advocate or arch nemesis. If you don’t encourage yourself to grab your dragon and take it for a walk who will?
Do you also encourage others to do something that peaks their curiosity?
Purpose is very important, it helps you dig a little deeper for the curiosity that helps you find creative solutions.
As I type this I hesitate because of how you might view my ideas, but I keep typing. I want you to know that following your curiosity can be a wonderful experience if you don’t allow yourself to get too attached to the outcome.
The only way you will to do work that truly matters is doing work that you are curious about. Curiosity is so important to living a great career. The ideas that stand the test of time are done from curiosity not for the pursuit of money.
In every person’s life they hit that fork and take the easy road. They take a job that pays well, but doesn’t light them up inside. Or they avoid taking a job to discover what they truly love to do.
Everyone hits this fork. The people that stay on the easy road end up coasting along. Now the people that say I’m tired of this path I know what matters to me and I’m going to go for it. It’s these people that believe their lives matter. Their lives shouldn’t be about coasting, but about doing something that impacts people they care about.
You have to ask yourself these 3 questions that I learned from Jason Fried:
- What’s important?
- What should be the same?
- What needs to change?
This should be a regular part of your career and your team's development.
The greatest change I made in the past year is taking my gratitude journal to a whole new level. I grab a blank sheet of paper fold it in half and then half again. I open it back up and I write.
Then I list as many as I can, except for better. I only put one on the “better” list. I don’t want to overwhelm myself with trying to improve too many things at once. Just one small step that I know I can handle.
I do this to help me capture my life.
I focus on what I’ve done well, where I struggle, what I could do better, and what stories I can share with others.
It encourages me take the bird’s eye view of my life.
Then at the end of the month I ask myself the above 3 questions I learned from Jason.
Instead of piling more on to my busy plate, I focus on what’s important. It’s this focus that has made a huge difference in my happiness. The main difference is the belief in my work has come back into focus.
I stopped trying to be all things to all people.
I’m on this earth to be happy, help others, and catch the uncatchable.
“Dragon’s are real, Dad,” my sold told me as we walked to the playground.
“Yep. They are,” I said. “You know what I love about dragons?” I asked him.
He stopped. Looked up at me.
“Riding them to the playground.”
“Yeah, me too.”
I smiled. He put his hands between his legs and rode off on his dragon.
When did you stop believing in dragons?
Your first “real job”?
When you didn’t get the validation you expected?
It’s time to believe in dragons again. It’s time you created a project that you care about, a project that you want to put time into each day. A project that has unlimited potential to help people.
Believe in curiosity.
Follow it to new places. Even frustrating places that test your last ounce of patience.
The first step is to ask yourself, “What’s important to you?”
What project can you start and work on for the next 30 days? Can you write about something that changes people’s perspective? Can you make something that no one thought was needed?
What are you curious about that needs exploring?
Are you curious about your own team’s happiness and how you can create experiences that bring them closer together? Then check out the Work Happy Now Emergency Kit - Break in case of stress overload. You can get the first 6 modules in this free ebook here.
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