I have asked this question of myself many times over the course of my life and career thus far. Sometimes I do ask it in a literal sense! The rest of the time, it is about a different kind of MAD - Making A Difference.
Working in the ‘for-purpose’ sector can be a key way that we seek to Make A Difference in the lives of others – in the health, community and social sectors and/or in one of a plethora of charitable endeavours. Essentially work that is seeking, in some way, to improve the lives of others. And the logic follows that if we Make A Difference to others that we will also find meaning and fulfilment personally.
But this is not so simple in practice.
Our work doesn’t happen in a vacuum and we are not robots. Our messy imperfect lives and our (sometimes messy) imperfect selves can and will impact on our work.
And, in our work, we are faced with many challenges, sometimes overwhelming need, constrained resources, competing priorities, increasing pressure to do more with less, politics, personalities and the list goes on.
CUE frustration, stress, exhaustion, helplessness, resentment, burnout…
I have experienced myself and witnessed in many others this vicious cycle in action. I have read many accounts in the literature of the rising prevalence and, in some cases, the ‘inevitability’ of burnout.
Whilst our technical skills and know-how are important, I believe that how we turn up, the compassion we show to ourselves and others matters so much more…
I believe that we need to fundamentally shift the way we approach our work within the context of the whole of our lives. This is essential to fulfilling our purpose in a way this is not at the expense of our energy, wellbeing and other parts of our lives that are important to us.
This is not about quick fixes or magic bullets – if it was easy, we’d all have it sorted right? I believe that creating meaningful and enduring social impact requires deep and rich expertise, a growth mindset and a whole lot of stamina:
I help people Make A Difference through building capability in all of the ingredients, tools and methods outlined in the recipe for MADness. Through mentoring, training and tailored projects, I:
Help you build a comprehensive toolkit (methods, skills, tools) and your confidence in their implementation
Motivate and inspire you to harness your unique strengths, to step forward with courage and compassion and to be an agile and effective change maker
Challenge thought patterns and work practices: how you turn up; your internal dialogue (helping you get out of your own way); and how you can disrupt the way you work to be highly productive AND aligned with your personal style and strengths – from struggle to flow
Help you to break through barriers and pave your personal path to sustainable impact.