My clients generally have great jobs. They really do! Well-paid jobs in interesting fields such as Arts, academia, infrastructure, fashion - and are successful at them.
And yet, there is that niggling feeling that there is more, that they are not working at their highest potential. They are dissatisfied because they are ready to move on from working at their zone of competence or their zone of excellence*.
The zone of competence or excellence* sounds good, doesn’t it? So where is this frustration coming from? Without being familiar with the terms, they intuitively know they could be making a bigger contribution than they are now and they are ready to move forward.
Are you working in your zone of genius?
The zone of competence (what you can do well, but so can others), zone of excellence (what you are really, really good at) and zone of genius (your unique gifts) are all terms coined by psychologist and writer Guy Hendricks*. When I first heard about these I was fascinated and so relieved! You see, I had pretty cool jobs too, so whenever I brought up the fact that I didn’t feel fulfilled, I did not get much sympathy from those around me!
When we have been doing well in our work for a while and are being praised for it by those around us, it is sometimes hard to push ourselves outside of our comfort zone into something new. When we are feeling the need to do more, some good questions to ask yourself are -
What would the world look like if I worked to bring about my unique gifts?
What special contribution could I be making that everyone is missing out on?
Our work life is a process of getting to know what we are good at, what we love to do, what we can do without and what motivates us.
Reached the point where you want help finding out what you could be uniquely great at and meet that frustration head-on, then let’s have a conversation to get you started!
* All references to zone of competence, zone of excellence and zone of genius are sourced from The Big Leap, by Guy Hendricks (2009). Harper Collins Publishers, New York, NY.
Photo: Kelly Sikkema