Though I am in recovery, I am a pleaser. I aim to make people happy. If I think a decision I’m making will result in negative feedback from someone else, I’m thinking twice about it. As a result, I often say yes easily. Now, I truly do like helping people, but my automatic yes sometimes results in the voice in my head asking, in a whiny voice, “why?”
This week though, was asked by someone I’d worked with doing some freelance work could refer me to a colleague. Within minutes, I was writing out the response text to say “sure, thanks for asking.” But then I stopped. I started thinking about the kind of work I’d done with them in the past and how that wasn’t what I wanted to be doing. Could I do it? Yes. But want to? No. And so, after thinking and praying about it, the next morning I wrote him and declined, referring them instead to a former colleague who specializes in that type of work. And it felt great!
Before I made the decision, I felt anxious, nervous about saying no, but once I did, once I was true to myself, I felt free. Later in the week, I was involved in a situation by default and the discussion was around a topic that I’d rather not think about for hours on end. It was necessary, but negative, draining, and I could feel the uneasiness in my stomach all day. In that case, I didn’t have a choice. But in many cases, I do, you do.
Think about it this way. Those things you really love to do, you do with all your heart. Could be something creative, could be cleaning, cooking, or golf, skiing, cycling, or swimming, or maybe you work on cars, or are a collector…only you know what that thing is, but when you’re doing it, it’s your jam. You lose track of time. For me, it’s being creative, and it’s engaging with others and helping them move their lives forward, whether it be at home or at work. When I’m in that space, I’m in it with all my heart. I’m engaged, and focused.
It’s my sweet spot.
What I’ve learned is that the greater degree to which I can stay in the sweet spot, the better results I’m going to have. AND, the more focused and productive I’ll be. Think about it for yourself. Do you know your sweet spot? If you do, what percent of your day are you spending in that space? And if you’re not spending a lot of time there, why not?
If you don’t know your sweet spot, you have a unique opportunity. One which could lead you to feel like you’re all in, engaged, and creating a fulfilling life. I know that, for me, I’ve spent too much time trying to please others, and saying yes when I really want to say “heck no.” And it’s not about only doing what I want, or what I’m good at. It’s about being in that sweet spot where I know I’m using gifts that I’m meant to be using. My own ‘special sauce.’ So if you’re still looking…not quite sure what the sweet spot feels like, saying yes when you want to say no, spend some time on it, dream. If you need a little help, or guidance on your journey, that’s what I’m here for, it’s my sweet spot.