About our Blog post Author: Krista Skidmore, Esq., SPHR, President: In her role as FlashPoint’s president, Krista Skidmore helps businesses, nonprofit organizations, and government agencies to define and implement their strategic plans, to build their human resource functions, to establish cultures focused on employee performance, and to develop managers into effective leaders.  Krista earned a JD from the Indiana University School of Law–Indianapolis and a bachelor’s degree in human resource management and psychology from Anderson University. Before co-founding FlashPoint, she worked within the HR consulting industry, both for her own firm and in a leadership capacity for another regional consulting company. She is a board member of the Arts Council of Indianapolis and the Indiana Humanities Council and formerly served as president of the Central Indiana chapter of the American Society for Training and Development.

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How HR and business leaders can stay connected to the deeper meaning in their work:

We all work a lot—longer hours and wider job scopes leave many feeling stretched, pulled, and torn. I don’t make it through a day without hearing this sentiment and the visual that comes to mind is a common form of torture during the Middle Ages—racking.

Our work doesn’t have to torment us. In fact, it can be liberating and energizing. So, how do we get on a roll and find the momentum we need in our work and personal lives?

We can get started by discovering what is most meaningful in our lives and then focusing our time and energy accordingly.

Let’s tackle meaning first…

As it turns out, working on stuff we believe in is more satisfying—when we are happy with our work we perform better and our organizations are better for it. So, have you ever written down the answers to these questions?

  • What do you want your life to look and feel like?
  • What do you value most in your life?
  • After it’s too late to do anything about it, what do you want to be able to say about your life?
  • What is missing from your life?
  • What are you most proud of? Least proud of?
  • When you have the most energy, what are you doing? Who are you with?
  • If you had to pick five words that describe what you want most in your life, what are those five words?

I invested some time recently in answering these questions again and my answers might be different than what you expect. It’s not human resource consulting or leadership development or leading FlashPoint or serving as a volunteer with Indiana community organizations. Finding meaning in my life hasn’t come through my job or my business or other positions (solely that is).

For me finding meaning started with knowing the answers to each of the above questions. My answers include growth, freedom, flow, integrity, big ideas, developing others, culture, art, travel, great relationships, and much more.

Your answers will be different, but no less meaningful.

Once I knew what was most important to me, I went to step two: focus

I began examining the things in my life and determined what fit and what didn’t fit—what activities were aligned with the life I wanted. This brought everything into focus and gave me a tool to make decisions and the momentum I needed to get on a roll. Sometimes we collect activities and tasks that are truly energy leaks…sometimes we feel obligated and sometimes we don’t know what we are getting into. This is exactly how we start to feel racked! In any case running our personal, work, and volunteer lives through a “meaning filter” could be just the trick to align your life with what is most important to you.

Since so many of my HR and business contacts feel the pressures in their work and personal life, I am curious what you have done to find meaning and focus in your life or how you have helped your employees do the same? Your turn to share!