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3 Ways to Rediscover Purpose in your Work

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In this article:

I recently admitted to losing my mojo at work, and asked my wonderful Wednesday Wisdom readers how to find that sense of meaning again. WOW, you delivered!

We received 469 incredibly helpful and insightful ideas about meaning and purpose at work. 

Take a look...

Here's all your responses in a cloud!

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We asked how important a sense of meaning was in your work, and the results were an average rating of 9.0/10. Woh.

Then I asked how to rediscover meaning, when it's lost. There were heaps of incredible answers and suggestions - and most of them centred around three key areas:

1. Shift your perspective

"Look at the big picture. Your work will be helping somebody indirectly which is so cool!"

"I think zooming out and zooming back in. Checking out the big picture of how your work fits into the grand scheme of things, and then maybe digging around in nooks and crannies to consider the tiny little ways you contribute and make a difference."

"Shift your focus - go big or go small. It's easy to get stuck on aspects of our work such as endless emails, meetings, same routine day after day. "Meaning can be found by focusing at a different level, for example the one on one interactions you have with others that can make a difference in their lives (going small) or the ultimate good that results from your contribution to a bigger whole (going big). Play around with different perspectives until you find even a glimmer of meaning or purpose and focus on that. What you focus on will expand."


2. Focus on how you help others

"Remembering how their work impacts the lives of others, no matter how small."

"Talk to others you work with or provide a service/product to.  They may appreciate your work more than you do!"

"Flip that question on its head, a realisation that your contribution, no matter how small makes other wheels go around. Also it’s about humility and a strong belief in ‘service to others’. Believe in your team or community and strive to serve. Don’t look to be recognised, it will come when the people say, “we did it ourselves”


3. Connect with your personal vision and values

"In my experience when this has happened it is generally because I have gotten caught up in stress or too much mental activity and am operating from my head rather than my heart - I have lost my connection with myself.  So in the first instance I recommend taking steps to reconnect with yourself first."

"Undertake a values exercise, it forces you to consider aspects of yourself you don't often notice, pay attention to, or are aware needs nourishment. This helps you focus when it really matters for you."

"Find a cause you can PERSONALLY support by your work. Create a personal vision and mission bigger than the company, bigger than the self."