Finding Your Sweet Spot

For some, work is simply an exchange of time for money, living for the weekend when the real fun begins. But for many of us, work is a crucial piece of the puzzle of maximizing our potential. This post is for the latter group.

The holy grail of a career that brings together our abilities, our greatest value to others, and an ongoing sense of deep fulfillment is often found only after a long process of trial-and-error (if it is found at all). Along the way, we yearn to find the sweet spot – that place and role where we really fit. I often think of the process as like a pinball machine – while we’d love to think that our lives proceed along a nice, straight, well-planned arc, the reality is that we often bounce from here to there, learning along the way what works well and what doesn’t. I worked in Sales for many years before concluding that I’m really not a naturally gifted salesperson. By the same token, I can now look back (in retrospect) and see that certain of my marketing instincts were present, though unrecognized, way back in my teens. It took a long while for them to surface professionally.

So, if you’ve found your sweet spot (or if you’re on the journey), what has helped you to begin to see your “fit” more clearly? Was it wise counsel from a friend or co-worker? Was it a particular book (for me, the book Now, Discover Your Strengths was absolutely revolutionary)? A formal personality inventory/assessment? Was it just the ongoing analysis of circumstances and performance over time that helped you see your personal and professional bulls-eye?

I believe that one of our highest life challenges is finding our sweet spot and running our best course. I also know that many people in their 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s are still searching, still asking what they’re going to do when they grow up. Tell your story in the comments – and, how would you advise others? Let’s discuss – I’m very curious to see how others have moved toward their bulls-eye in life.

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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About Steve Woodruff
Steve Woodruff is a blogger, a Connection Agent, and a consultant in the pharma/healthcare industry. He specializes in helping people and companies make mutually beneficial connections.

5 Responses to Finding Your Sweet Spot

  1. Vicki says:

    For me, the disturbing part is that I had, briefly, almost what I wanted. For the past 5 years I had a job I really enjoyed doing. I helped people. They appreciated the help. I got excellent feedback. I Liked my work. I had manager problems during that period, including one manager who wanted me to change what I did. I could have left but I Liked My Job and I fought back. I managed to get a different manager and things got better.
    And then the good manager resigned. And the division re-orged. And the new manager didn’t want what I did. And I got laid off.
    And now I’m looking for work and jobs like the one I had are difficult to find. And I find that I don;t want to settle for “Just OK” anymore.

    p.s. the book Now, Discover Your Strengths was absolutely revolutionary for me too. :-)

    • I think the conclusion has been in for a while now, Vicki – the manager makes or breaks the work environment. One reason I really enjoy being on my own, and counsel others to do so if it is at all possible and wise!

      • Vicki says:

        Yes, that’s been true for me too. This was the first time that I fought to stay with the job and company and find a different manager. Usually, I just start to look for a new job when the manager goes wrong.

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