Are you in a Job, a Career, or a Calling? Why Your Mindset Matters

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Imagine living out your calling—each day filled with purpose, satisfaction and the happiness that comes from doing exactly what you are MEANT to do.

Maybe you’re living this now.  Maybe you’re definitely not.  Maybe you don’t know what your calling is.  Maybe you’ve experienced the feeling of a calling through volunteering or parenthood.  But is your current job your calling? Can it be? I mean, it is called a “job” for a reason, right?

What is a calling?  Shelley Prevost of Torch says: “A calling is passionate and compulsive.  It starts as an inkling (“I’d like to try that”) then swells into a mandate you can’t shake.  A calling isn’t an easy path, which is why most of us never know it.  We fear the struggle, the foolishness, the risk, and the unknown.  So, we choose a career because it matches the boxes we’ve been told to check (Inc).”

A calling has to do with the “why” of working.  Figuring out the “why” can bring internal motivation and a different kind of job satisfaction.

Is finding your calling a way to reach a pinnacle in your career or can a change in mindset bring about the same type of satisfaction?

Changing Your Mindset Brings Satisfaction

I recently read a very powerful book called The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor.  In it, Achor describes three “levels” –a job, a career, and a calling.  He says that a “job” brings the least amount of satisfaction.  A career brings more satisfaction because of professional development and better financial gain.  A calling brings the highest level of satisfaction and the least amount of people experience it.

Here’s what is interesting– Achor notes a phenomenon from the field of positive psychology: happiness fuels success instead of the other way around.  Studies show that bringing happiness with you into your workplace can fuel success in contrast to an expectation that your workplace brings you happiness.

Achor describes ways to reprogram our brains to bring about happiness and gain a competitive advantage. Some highlights include retraining our brains to find opportunities wherever we look, channeling our efforts into small, manageable goals, and investing in our social support network.

Could changing our mindset like this make a job or career feel more like a calling? Melody Wilding, ForbesWomen, says that changing your mindset can help.  She gives this example: Let’s say that you work at a law office or medical practice, shuffling papers and generally keeping people on track. Instead of giving in to negative self-talk or on “getting by” each day, choose to focus on how integral your responsibilities are to making the practice successful.”  She says to develop your work relationships to add to work happiness and satisfaction.  If you are not living your calling now, odds are good that the people you work with and/ or know can help you get to a better place.

Questions to Guide Your Path

Along with working on an improved mindset, it can be helpful to step back and ask yourself these questions to help you on your work path (from Melody Wilding, ForbesWomen):

  • What is the most meaningful part of my job?
  • Do I end my workday feeling emotionally satisfied?
  • Would I be in this position if I didn’t need the paycheck?
  • Do I want to rise to the top of my chosen career path or am I happy where I am?

These are tough questions.  They can cause stress or can be just the motivation some people need to make long overdue changes.  Along with these questions, ask yourself what kind of mindset you bring to your work.

Artemis Consultants advises clients daily to choose job opportunities that play into their natural strengths and long-term goals.  We also look for candidates who will bring a happy, positive mindset to a position.

Perhaps finding a position closer aligned to your calling means calling on an expert.  Please visit our website for a list of our recruiting services.

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