More than half of Americans are dissatisfied in their work, according to a recent survey by the Conference Board, a New York based nonprofit. Work can be stressful, frustrating and exhausting. If we are going to spend the majority of our waking hours working, wouldn’t it be nice to make them as purposeful, satisfying and productive as possible? How on earth are we supposed to do that?
No one sets a goal to pursue a life of mediocrity. Yet many of us find ourselves on the path of least resistance, whether we meant to be or not. Then we find ourselves searching for meaning, fulfillment, growth and impact, but not finding them. That’s because we’re on the wrong path. We need to move from a life of mediocrity to a life of stewardship.
In training and coaching leaders, I invariably get pulled into a discussion about entitlement. “Millennials…” and “Kids these days…” Some even claim it is a societal issue. I can’t really disagree as 1st graders are handed trophies they can barely carry to the car after finishing last in the town soccer league. So, what can we do about it? What kind of example are we setting for those we lead and influence? Could gratitude be the answer? If so, we’ll gain much more than grateful attitudes around the office and dinner table.
Vacations are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Americans get less annual vacation time (14 days) than many other countries, according to Expedia.com. The French, for example get about 38 days per year to get away.
According to John de Graaf of Take Back Your Time, 137 countries make paid vacation mandatory; the United States isn’t one of them. To top it all off, over 30% of Americans don’t use all their annual vacation days, leaving about 3 days on the table each year.
People matter. If we intend to go far in life, we can’t go it alone. Are you able to take risks, pursue opportunities and achieve more because of the people in your life? That has absolutely been true for me. Without my family, friends, colleagues and especially my wife…well, you wouldn’t be reading this. I am able to accomplish my goals and pursue my potential thanks to the relationships I have. Hopefully the same is true for you. But, one thing I’ve learned is that thriving relationships don’t come easy.