Growth is good and we all want to be part of a growing company. But there is a dark side; a year of late nights, working on weekends, always-being-connected can really take a toll on people--depleting energy and impacting wellbeing.
Research shows that people who have more personal resources like hope, optimism, and resilience are able to find and maintain a better balance between job demands and resources. These people usually use these same personal resources to find sources of passion and joy both at and outside of work.
The great news about personal resources is that they are like a renewable source of energy. The most powerful way we can renew them is by improving our well-being.
Well-being isn't just about being fit, not being sick, or feeling happy. It's about being "well" in the many aspects of our life. The Japanese concept of 'ikigai', which translates as a reason to get up in the morning encompasses many aspects of wellbeing like what we love, what we are good at, what the world needs and what we can get paid for. Author Dan Buettner believes ikigai is a key factor in the exceptionally long lives of Okinawans.
When my company was still very young, I saw that many of the leaders we were working with to grow their business were experiencing a lot of stress. So we developed a self-assessment tool that measures five dimensions of well-being. Over the past 16 years we've shared it with thousands of leaders around the world to help them take care of their own well-being, and that of those around them.
Take a look at these five aspects of wellbeing and reflecting on what matters to you. What are you doing to have more well-being in your life?
This aspect of well-being is characterized by a sense of meaning and purpose in life that leads to calmness, balance, and feeling connected to something larger than ourselves. For many, organized religion is a powerful source of peace, but others find peace in other ways, including through the work they do.
- My job allows me to align my values with my actions.
- I believe that I'm contributing to a greater good.
- I spend time on activities that give me a sense of peace.
This includes the attitudes we adopt, the values we hold, and our behaviors to maintain balance and productivity in our work, especially in the face of disruptive change. When our adaptation level is high, we are both flexible and focused. We feel confident we can overcome obstacles and get the job done despite ambiguity.
Ask yourself if...
- I adapt quickly to unexpected changes.
- I persevere when faced with a problem.
- I take responsibility to build my knowledge and skills.
This involves both our ability to achieve the goals we've set and our sense that we have the right support network. It includes using our own personal interests, attitudes, and self-management techniques to help us enjoy our work, boost our performance, and make positive change(s) in our work environment.
- I spend my time and energy focusing on problems I can control, not on things I cannot control.
- I monitor my performance and look for ways to improve.
- I reward myself for attaining goals with pleasurable activities.
This is about a state of feeling truly healthy, not just simply having no symptoms of disease. Being physically well and having a high level of energy involves many lifestyle choices. The choices we make either contribute to a strong, healthy, and fit body that lasts a long time and resists sickness, or it leads to an unwell body that is susceptible to fatigue, stress, illness, and disease.
Can you say:
- I exercise for at least 20 minutes, three times per week.
- I drink at least eight glasses of water each day.
- I eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables per day.
This is about our network of relationships and the skills, attitudes, and behaviors that allow us to feel connected to others and ourselves. Interpersonal well-being is characterized by satisfying and meaningful relationships that provide support, fun, and challenge.
- I spend time with my friends and family to keep our relationships strong.
- I turn to my network of friends and family for support when I need it.
- I spend time building new and existing relationships.
Take time this holiday season to take stock of your well being, renew your energy and set yourself up for happiness in work and life in 2018.