About 18 months ago a good friend and mentor of mine said to me: “where’s the fire in your eyes for work gone?”
Have you ever known someone to say something so real that you think they can see right through you? It strips you bare, cuts to the core and jolts you awake. The strange thing is he wasn’t the only one saying this sort of thing to me. In fact, if I’d been listening, really listening, I would have heard it repeatedly from colleagues, friends and loved ones. And if I’d really listened carefully, listened with my whole self and body, I would have heard it in myself.
Basically, I was comfortably in my comfort zone.
“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone. You won’t find glory at the centre of safety, but at its edge. You have nothing to lose except the chance to win. Life is not long enough to spend it on the side-lines.” Neale Donald Walsch
This is where my coaching journey started. As part of a leadership program I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to work with a coach. This was my first experience with co-active coaching and dedicating time to focus on what matters to me in life. The opportunity to sit and work with someone as a partner, not to solve problems or fix challenges (although this happened too), but to establish a clearer sense of self and purpose, made everything possible.
What became very clear to me during these conversations was that not choosing to change anything was, in fact, choosing. By saying no to change, I was saying yes to status quo. And by saying yes to status quo, I was saying no to growth.
Suddenly by being clear about what I wanted out of life, quietening the self-limiting thoughts and building my confidence, bigger things became possible... and the fire started to come back!
Fast-forward to now – I had a baby, left my job with LinkedIn (after 6 wonderful years) and set up my own company focused on helping emerging leaders fly. I have the opportunity to spend every day working with individuals to help them play big – being braver and bolder in their pursuit of a purposeful life.
The journey to get here has not always been easy, with many ups and downs, but I’ve never felt so challenged, so energised or so alive. And the fire in the eyes…well that’s here to stay!