How do you know when you’ve made it to the top? Are you continuously pushing yourself and chasing your dream of becoming ‘CEO’? If you are, good for you! Is the label of the career ladder the determination point for you to achieve? If so, it’s possible you’re selling yourself short and not enjoying what you have in the moment… it’s all about gratitude.
Gratitude & Chasing the Top
It’s great to have goals and aspirations that push you and make you reach outside your comfort zone, but it’s also important to appreciate the goals you have achieved along the way — and be realistic. Gratitude plays a large role in our attitude toward our current work environment and what environment we yearn for in the future. Julia is going to share her personal journey of gratitude and chasing the top where hopefully you will find inspiration and solace in her experience that will shift your mindset of your current 9-5.
The ‘top’ in a business structure would be the tip of the pyramid, or in other terms “CEO.” Who doesn’t want to be a CEO? No, I’m not talking about being your own-boss type CEO, but rather working your way up through the ranks of a big company. The title that makes others listen and turn heads, and mostly that paycheck that comes with it! It all sounds amazing… but when you take a step back and practice gratitude it may not be as amazing as it sounds.
Did you know the odds of becoming a CEO if you have received an MBA is 1 in 135,000? If you have an engineering degree it’s 1 in 163,636 and a law degree 1 in 385,714. Those are some pretty tough odds to work with and you betcha, you’ll have to work your bloody arse off to become that ‘1’. These stats have come from Fortune, Forbes & US News.
After those stats, and accepting my current position within a global company my views of the “top” have changed.
It’s amazing how one moment of reflecting on what goals you’ve accomplished and what you’re grateful for reshapes how you think and view the world. Although we are faced with obstacles every single day, the outcome is all dependent upon your mindset.
My very first ‘corporate’ job I accepted, I absolutely hated with every fiber in my body. I lasted one month. I was absolutely miserable. No amount of time would have made it any better. Then I made a rash call that a ‘desk job’ wasn’t for me.
Reflecting back, this rash call was purely made on one bad experience and I let it close a lot of opportunities for me. I pushed into my mindset that the 9-5 was a terrible way to imprison myself.
The dream for a lot of people is to not be a slave to a desk, and break the 9-5 and work on your own terms. Although ideal, it’s not easily achievable unless you have enough capital behind you to kick-start you and a brilliant unique idea to spark a business in a market that is otherwise saturated with small start-ups (if you’re wanting it to be your sole source of income). I’m not trying to sound pessimistic, rather realistic. It’s important to ground yourself and be realistic with your destination goals otherwise you’re setting yourself up to be unhappy.
I get this, because this was my mindset for a long-time… until I started practicing gratitude on a daily basis.
With practicing gratitude on a daily basis it has shifted my mind-set into appreciating how far I have come, and what I have in the present. It has allowed me to live more present in the moment, and STILL have goals for the future. What I was doing wrong before was focusing so much on where I wanted to see myself in 5 years that I wasn’t appreciating what I have now, and honestly not realizing what I had.
This is a catch-22, although you see yourself as being positive and setting goals for the future you sometimes get so caught up that you forget to acknowledge and appreciate the goals you have accomplished in the present.
So, how do I practice daily gratitude? It’s simple. Before I go to bed I ask myself, mentally, what 3 things I’m grateful for. They can be simple, they can be complex. As long as I reflect back on my day with what I’m grateful for I sleep better at night, and I find myself smiling and sometimes I may laugh a little. This is all from me being present and realizing all that has gone on around me and how it’s shaped me for the day, and for the next day.
I also take a daily gratitude minute. It can be anywhere, at your office desk, outside on a lunch break, anywhere. I use this minute to truly be present, to listen to what’s going on around me… or to feel the breeze in its entirety. This minute changes my whole day and resets my body if it’s been hectic in the morning or if I’m feeling a bit ‘off.’
So, how has daily gratitude changed my mindset?
The New ‘Top’
My mindset has entirely flipped. When I started to practice daily gratitude, my idea of the ‘top’ was no longer destination CEO. My idea of the ‘top’ is now where I can truly be present and still have 3 things to be grateful for each-night before I go to sleep.
My position in my current company is by no means near the ‘top’ and doesn’t have the paycheck to be the ‘top’, but that isn’t what is important to me anymore. What’s important is that I absolutely love my desk-job that I have been at for several months now. It allows me to still read up on interesting things happening in the world, it leaves the internet at my finger-tips where I can plan my future holidays that I will have worked hard for ,and earned to truly appreciate the holiday. This has everything to do with perspective.
Most importantly, my work environment is a positive place and we enjoy ourselves and the company of one-another as we all are like minded. We make it a point to take breaks from the office and go to the beer garden for lunch, or go out for team dinners.
This wouldn’t happen if I didn’t have a positive mind going into work everyday and I can thank practicing gratitude daily for that.
In my eyes, I’ve already made it to the top.
It’s amazing how a change in daily activities and self awareness will affect your entire life. Be present and accept where you are while acknowledging the goals you’ve achieved along the way. Don’t get so caught up in your future goals that you forget what is around you. Practice gratitude daily, it’s as simple as asking yourself what you’re thankful for throughout the day. It can be as simple as someone saying good-morning to you!