Part of the Explore your Why – 9 part series
In selecting a career, volunteering your time, or contributing to an organisation what you love will guide you, as suggested in the previous blog, however, what you enjoy, will provoke you.
During my first trip to Kenya when deciding what activities I wanted to participate in, I struggled between my strengths and what I thought I would enjoy. Little consideration, at the time, was taken for who actually would benefit from my expertise and skillset. My option was to work with women entrepreneurs or paint alongside teenage girls in the slum. Although I could add more value to entrepreneurs, I decided to work alongside the latter.
I went to Kenya because I love learning about cultures and having new experiences; my adventurous side needed oxygen. I had an opportunity to gain access to a place that tourists often don’t go. Questioning is my strength; learning is what I enjoy. Speaking to Kenyan teenage girls would offer me a perspective I may never otherwise experience. The road taken proved to be transformational.
The insight gained from these teenagers was another motivator for me to establish the YouMeWe Foundation and to pioneer WisdomExchangeTV.com, a platform where African girls could learn from leaders within their culture. Interviewing for Wisdom Exchange TV connected me to pioneering women and allowed me to learn about their leadership and social impact, all of which I love.
When exploring your purpose and evaluating what you love, also consider what you enjoy. Pursuing what you enjoy, can help you discover your strengths, leading you to something that motivates you.
Enjoyment is realised through taking actions.
By contributing to different groups in various capacities, will help assess what you enjoy. This will bring clarity to how you would like to contribute consistently. You may find yourself getting involved in a local environmental cleanup, or delivering food to the elderly, or mentoring a child or providing expertise to a social enterprise. I encourage you to try different things until you find something that brings you joy. Because when you enjoy it, you will seek opportunities to act on it, expand your knowledge about it, and optimise the impact you can have contributing to it.
Our careers can also offer the opportunity for us feel fulfilled while contributing to the community.
WisdomExchangeTV.com interviewed Norah Odwesso, who transitioned into a role in public affairs and communications at Coca-Cola from a career in accounting. She was a good accountant, but she didn’t enjoy it. She started seeking new opportunities within the organisation to connect with her colleagues and communities. By pursuing a career in communications, Norah now loves her job because she has the chance to make a difference in the lives of people. By taking the leap, Norah believes “I am living right in the middle of my purpose, that is a success.”
What have you enjoyed in your job, or where you have volunteered? Consider how can you take what you enjoy and impact society or the environment. There are many non-profits seeking people with expertise to help them realize their social goals. Perhaps you can create, or participate, in a volunteer support program at your work where you can give your time to a worthy cause. Now that would escalate employee engagement and impact – a win, win, win.
What you enjoy contributing to, can be enhanced by your inner gifts.
We will cover strengths next weWednesday as we continue the Explore your Why series
Until next time, make your contributions count.
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About the Conscious Contributor
Suzanne F. Stevens, CSP, Conscious Contributor™ Cultivator
Social entrepreneur |International Speaker | Pioneer | Host | Philanthropist | Author
Lead tomorrow’s legacy today.
#YouMeWe Group of Initiatives | Cultivate, Celebrate, Co-create conscious-contributions™
Book launch coming soon: YouMeWe: lead tomorrow’s legacy today
2017 National President: Canadian Association of Professional Speakers (CAPS)
Awards: TIAW World of Difference Recipient for women economic empowering
Accreditation: Suzanne is one of 64 Certified Speaking Professionals (CSP) in Canada and is in the exclusive 15% of speakers who have this designation internationally.