Not Sure How to Find Career Fulfillment in Your Life? Try This. |

I love the concept of gardening -- connecting with the earth, the beauty of flowers and plants, the feeling of accomplishment.

Sigh. If my garden had eyes, they would be rolling. If it had a mouth, it would be laughing -- or, more likely, complaining. As far as I know, there is not a Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Plants; if there was, I am certain I would be some list. My Mom, Dad, husband George, and some local kids who are saving money to by iPods have (thankfully) come to the rescue of my thirsty, rocky, and weedy garden. It looks great, no thanks to me.

While putting together the garden at the lake house this year I had the opportunity to meet Crystel, the landscape designer at our local nursery. Crystel is a brilliant horticulturist. She is also an artist -- and the gardens she has installed reflect her creative side.

Over the summer Crystel patiently answered my countless questions about the care of the plants, all the while privately knowing that I can barely remember to water them. Crystal’s love and passion for gardening is infectious, deep, and real. Being around Crystel makes me want to be a better gardener, if only to share her happiness. She embodies the concept of a person who has achieved flow in her career.

The psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi coined the term “flow” to describe the state people achieve when they are so enjoying what they are doing that they become completely absorbed in an activity. It is a nice state and a key to career-related happiness.

The big question: Do you know what brings you to a state of career-related flow? If your answer is "no", then try this: Ask someone who loves you "when do you see me at my happiest? what am I doing?" Ideally you can ask these questions of someone who not only cares about you but who has also observed you over time and is easily able to articulate when you are happiest.

In Crystel's case, her husband introduces her in the following way:

Crystel goes to work and digs in the dirt all day. The she comes home and digs in the dirt until dark. When she comes in for the evening, she reads books about digging in the dirt.

Crystel’s husband knows what brings her a sense of happiness and flow -- that is, of course, digging in the dirt.

How would your partner, parents, or best friend describe the career-related activity holding the greatest level of engagement for you? Give it a try -- and ask. The answer may just hold the key to your career fulfillment.

Best wishes,


Posted via email from AndyWergedal