“My whole plan is to get recharged, redirected, and rested…
I’ve got to figure out where all this passion, energy, and inspiration goes.
I don’t want it to be on a football field.
I’m excited to see where this takes me.”
-Chris Peterson | Former Head Coach, University of Washington
Chris Peterson shocked the college football world in early December when he suddenly announced that he was stepping down as Head Football Coach at the University of Washington. At the age of 55 and for no clear reason, the successful coach walked away from a coveted job that so many others aspire to. In a later interview, Peterson offered the quote above, providing insight into the mind of a man who clearly understands the connection between his goals and his values while offering sage advice for the rest of us.
To be clear, I’m not advocating that you suddenly resign from your job! The financial implications of that decision would be difficult for most of us to manage. However, I do advocate that you engage in the same process of self-discovery that Coach Peterson must have taken. He understands that to be truly fulfilled, he must dutifully and intentionally consider the intersection of the following questions:
What do I love?
What am I good at?
What can I get paid for?
What does the world need?
In my opinion, Coach Peterson most carefully considered the final question in determining that the world doesn’t NEED another football coach, but instead that he could use the skills he learned as a coach to positively impact a larger subset of society. And don’t we all have something to share with the world? Your gifts are probably different than Coach Peterson’s, and their uniqueness is what makes them valuable.
The Japanese have a word that describes this intersection of those four questions: Ikigai. Loosely translated, Ikigai means “reason for being” and it can be a powerful state of mind that frees you up to pursue dreams, goals, and personal fulfillment on a grand scale.
While the four questions provide the framework for this road to discovery, the really interesting stuff happens when you look at where some of the ideas intersect, but others miss the mark. I pen this blog every couple of weeks and pass out advice and pose questions regarding really important parts of your life and ask you to look deep inside yourself. The problem is, I don’t always share where I am, and that’s not fair to you. If I’m being honest with myself, I’m somewhere left and above center. It’s hard for me to believe that the world needs someone like me out coaching others, but the response I get from those I get to work with tells me otherwise. At the same time, I’m good with not having found my Ikigai (yet), because the journey to the center is an amazing ride.
What about you? Do you find the sweet spot of Ikigai in the work you do? If not, are you content in knowing that the journey is just as important as the destination? To help you begin your journey towards Ikigai, our team has created an online course that I believe will assist you in becoming the best possible version of yourself AND lead to career success, personal achievement, and fulfillment both personally and professionally. I hope you click the link below to begin.
Looking for the sweet spot,