Where’s My Enthusiasm?

Enthusiasm makes the difference!

How many times have you heard that? And how many times have you thought to yourself, “yeah right! That’s fine when everything’s going right. How can I be enthusiastic with all the problems I have to face?”

Nowadays more and more people seem dissatisfied with their lives despite having the highest living standards since records began. They’re disillusioned with their jobs and re-evaluating what they really want from life. People are leaving high paid city jobs to seek careers which would add purpose to their lives – often at great financial expense. The enthusiasm they once possessed has disappeared.

What’s going on?

A couple of thoughts spring to mind.

(1) We expect our external circumstances to provide the passion and excitement for life we want.

Enthusiasm is one of the most important, basic elements in successful living. We look for it in great jobs, beautiful homes, exciting relationships. We think ‘when I get that next promotion I’ll be enthusiastic about my future again’. But is that what happens? Of course not! It just puts us on that never-ending treadmill of wanting to acquire more and more things in that elusive hope of finding happiness.

When happiness doesn’t happen we become cynical, frustrated and very unenthusiastic about life.

But how can we be enthusiastic when we’re lacking enthusiasm? We need to look for the answer inside ourselves.

Practice the “as if” principle. It’s a very powerful methodology working at the subconscious level. Since our subconscious doesn’t differentiate between fact and fiction, if we act enthusiastically on a regular basis, the more we will become what we are acting.

Of course this takes some discipline and determination but isn’t it worth the effort? Think enthusiasm, act out enthusiasm, talk enthusiasm and you will become enthusiastic.

Enthusiasm brings out your potential. People are drawn to you, you feel alive and passionate. In this frame of mind positive experiences are magnetically attracted to you. Find your enthusiasm and all the other necessary qualities for success are activated eg. successful goal setting, persistence, determination, ability to work in a focussed, organised manner. In short, when you’re enthusiastic about anything it is so much easier and more fun to do.

(2) We have lost our sense of purpose

Abraham Maslow created the pyramid of personal fulfilment over fifty years ago and at the top of this pyramid is a sense of purpose. As I mentioned earlier, more and more people are leaving high paid jobs to go into careers like teaching and nursing because they feel they want to give something back to society and give some purpose to their existence.

If you don’t know what your life’s purpose could be, think about the following questions but do them now rather than waiting until you’re completely drained, lethargic and even depressed:

· What do you want most out of life?

· What are you good at?

· What can you contribute?

Focus on the answers to these questions and notice how you feel. Do you sense enthusiasm rising? You should do if you’ve been totally honest with yourself. These don’t have to be major, life-changing answers. Small, simple

ideas will be enough to start you on the right road.

· Eg I want to motivate people to achieve their potential

· I’m good at communicating and being supportive

· I can hold weekly team-building sessions with my staff

When you shift your focus from what you don’t have in your life, or from what’s not going according to plan, to what you already do have to be grateful for and what you can do to bring back more purpose to your life, you rekindle your enthusiasm, that treadmill disappears and you see new, exciting challenges where once there was just tedium.

For more exercises to regain your enthusiasm, try out the ones below and remember that the more enthusiasm you feel, the more you generate in your life:

‘An object at rest tends to stay at rest. An object in motion

tends to stay in motion.’

Sir Isaac Newton

Coaching Clinic – Exercise

  1. Think about hobbies/sports you loved doing and perhaps have stopped due to time, lethargy, money. Could you pick one up again or start a new one?

  1. Think back to times when you felt fully alive and passionate.

What were you doing?

Who were you with?

Where were you?

From the answers, what elements could you bring back into your own life today?

Maybe your memory is one of being a young child, completely absorbed in the make-believe story you had created. Could the lesson be to focus more on the moment at hand and less on the future or the past? To give your full attention to what you’re doing?

  1. Employ the ‘as if’ principle. Act as if you had enthusiasm and it will develop in your mind.

  1. Think of all the passionate, enthusiastic people you admire, read their biographies (if they’re famous) or spend more time with them (if they’re not!) Enthusiasm is contagious. Theirs will rub off on you.

  1. Practice being enthusiastic about simple things – a beautiful day, the smile on someone’s face, getting through your in-tray!

Enthusiasm for the simple things will add up to a general attitude of enthusiasm and this will grow and grow with continual practice.

Rather than admiring and secretly envying enthusiastic people from a distance, become one yourself!

For those of you who already are naturally enthusiastic, what’s your secret?

By Sharon Juden, Life Coach and Hypnotherapist in Berkshire

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