As coaches and consultants, we find that many of our clients care passionately about their work, their organizations, their teams, their families and their communities but matter little in their own lives. While this approach may seem to be selfless and generous, it is in fact shortsighted and misguided. If you are to be available to the people and efforts that you care about, you must think hard about creating a life in which you matter. From the great religious traditions to current business negotiation strategies, the importance of loving your neighbor as yourself (which suggests you love yourself a lot as there is no value in loving your neighbor just the little you love yourself) and creating a win-win is central to success.
This week, we’d like to give you some questions to explore so that you can assess if you matter in your own life.
1. Do you take care of your physical and emotional health?
- Reflect on your habits with regard to:
- Spiritual nourishment
- Intellectual stimulation
- Solitude and quiet
2. Do you surround yourself with people who genuinely care about you?
- At work
- At home
- In your community
3. Does your work allow you to express your purpose, grow your skills, and influence how things unfold? If not, are there other areas in your life where you get these central needs met?
4. Does your home reflect who you are and what you care about?
- Is it a sanctuary to you and those you love?
5. Do you treat others with respect, kindness and honor? If you genuinely matter to yourself, it is easier to respond to others in ways that honor that they also matter. If you are not taking good care of yourself you become depleted and then your ability to genuinely care for and about others starts to erode.
Take some time this week to consider where you do matter in your own life and where you could be doing a better job caring for you – we encourage you to embrace yourself with all the love and respect you have shown others.