I have been working in the care sector all my adult life, and along the way I have been a trainer alongside being a practitioner. So, I will use this space to share some key thoughts and techniques whilst the articles section of my website will lean much more on the tools and techniques I have created, adapted and adopted.
Have you ever sat back and tried to identify why you do what you do? We all have to pay the bills, but there are many ways to pay the bills. So that gets us doing something, but what makes us end up in a career we sustain?
For some people, there is passivity to a job. You do it because that is where you got your first job, and progression has simply been a reaction to circumstances. There are some clients I work with who arrive often in their mid to late thirties, and life is not working for them in some way. Peering into their world, it looks like they have a perfect existence. They have a healthy family, a career that affords them status, a career that affords them some autonomy and is financially rewarding too. Beyond the workspace, their homes are in desirable areas and the holidays are plentiful. It can be a challenge to identify where the issue is, and yet they may present with a depressive condition, anxiety, or some addictive behaviour.
Despite all the trophies of life, they need support to figure out that what they do what they do has no source of joy or fulfilment for them. This is part of the problem with being passive through life. Even when it appears to work, it fails because ultimately, you end up living someone else’s life, fulfilling someone else’s dreams and meeting someone else’s expectations of a meaningful life. I think I’d figured me out by the time I was in my late 20’s, but I still could not have clearly expressed what it was that underpinned my drive to do my work for another half decade or so.
My epiphany to meaning did not come from adopting the pose of Rodin’s Thinker and hours of protracted contemplation, it was just a realisation over time that there were things that do not work for me and that those things had a common thread. I found I hasted waste. Yep, nothing so radical as wanting to change the world, nor even that I want to help people – although clearly I am made for that. I hate wasted paper, lights left on, being kept waiting, over consumption.
I shared knowledge as both a school teacher and then as a trainer, as I wanted to share that knowledge as it was a waste to hold onto it when others could profit and grow. I describe myself as acutely lazy, even though I am very, very busy, but that paradox stems from always seeking out the most efficient way to express something, or do something.
So how does this passion for hating waste relate to my career? The thing I can impact on the most is wasted potential, and by doing what I do, I can actively reduce that. For me there is nothing more satisfying than meeting someone who is caring, compassionate, and at a point where they have done too much giving. At this point, they are now using destructive behaviours to manage their feelings, and I work with them so they are back to being the amazing, inspiring, giving person they are made to be.
Equally with training, I’m driven by being able to release a professional’s potential. Typically it is not knowledge of skills that makes that shift come to light, it is giving the professional the skills, tools and permission to believe in themselves. I have had my moment of realisation of why I do what I do; maybe it is time to invest in you and figure out what drives you. Once you have it, it is so much easier to navigate your life so you live in a way that is more and more meaningful.
As part of that rationale I will use this space to share thoughts and encourage you to share your wisdom so we can all continue to grow and make our lives work for us. There will be no natural pattern; I tend to notice things in a random way. Stay tuned, you never know what you are going to get.
Have you figured out what drives you yet? What do you think is it that makes you be the best version of you? Give it some thought if you are not sure and share if you have an answer.