If you want to tap into your personal passion, self-knowledge is essential. Do you know your strengths? In business, nobody will manage your career if you don’t. If you truly want to rekindle personal passion for work, ask yourself four questions:
- What are my strengths?
- How do I perform best?
- How do I learn best?
- What do I need in order to grow or learn?
In the work I do coaching people, you’d be surprised how many people struggle to define answers to these questions. Working with a coach can help you learn more about yourself. You can also learn about your strengths through feedback from others.
I recommend you spend the most energy on developing strengths in lieu of focusing on weaknesses.
- How do you perform best?
- Are you a reader or a listener?
- Some people work well in teams, while others excel when flying solo.
- Some learn by doing, while others process information by hearing themselves talk.
The key to knowing yourself well is to receive feedback from peers, formal assessments, or work with a coach.
In an ideal world, we’d all be working with passion in jobs that bring out our strengths and talents to achieve the greatest good in organizations and the world. But that doesn’t always happen the way we envision.
An article in Harvard Business Review by John Hagel III and John Seely Brown (August 30, 2010), “Shape Serendipity, Understand Stress, Reignite Passion” explains:
We focus on passion in work for two reasons. First, our research suggests that passion is key to achieving sustained extreme performance improvement. This is essential to relieve the stress that we all feel in our work lives.
Ultimately, it’s up to each of us to go where we can develop and express our strengths if we truly want to make a difference.
But be aware of this and talk with your coach. Before you conclude that you need to redesign your career, change fields, or pursue reduced workloads, try to find your personal passion, doing work that is truly meaningful and satisfying.