First Know Thyself

This is a guest post by a 2015 Wellness Underground workshop alumni!

Many wellness professionals are becoming frustrated with the dialogue (and by dialogue, I mean arguing) among their peers.  Many are on the defense against those stating that workplace wellness is not working.  That they are not seeing the ROI that was promised.  That cultural issues are to blame for shortfalls.  That incentives are inadequate.  That the responsibility for wellness really lies with the individual.  And so on.  And on.  And on.

Has all of the controversy left you wondering what to do next?  Do you question what you once thought to be true?  Are you still certain of your methods?  This can leave one quite conflicted on how to proceed on their own wellness career path.

So, let’s make a conscious shift for a moment.  As a wellness professional, are you shaping the industry or is the industry shaping you?  What I mean by this question is this:  Over the span of your career, have you been true to YOU and what you stand for?  Or have you been dutiful to “best practices” because, well, they are the best?

Wellness is an industry.  And just like any other industry, there will be many different ways of developing products and services.  As a wellness professional, it is important to find your place within the industry.  If you are unsure of your place, you will find yourself in the cycle of frustration, job dissatisfaction and just plain wondering what it is you’re fighting for.

So...First Know Thyself.

Get clear about who you are.  When you have this clarity, you can begin to create a comfortable place for yourself in the wellness industry.  You become an expert in your particular service…with confidence.  You will find the perfect company in which to work…or become an entrepreneur.  And you become the perfect fit for the individual or workplace who needs to hear your unique voice.  (There are always people out there who need what only you can provide.)

Take some time to deeply ponder the answer to these questions:

  1. What do I want? For myself? For others? For those I serve?
  2. How do I want to feel? What needs to happen to make me feel that way?
  3. What segment of the industry do I really get excited about? What would I do for free if I didn’t need the money?
  4. What am I very good at? What am I not good at? What do I do better than anyone else?  Who does certain things better than me? Am I ok with that?
  5. What would my ideal workday look like? Who are my co-workers?  How many hours do I work?  Do I make the big decisions? Do I just go in and do my job and go home?
  6. On the job, do I want the freedom to express my own thoughts, feelings and opinions? And know that my ideas are likely to be implemented?
  7. Am I more comfortable implementing the works of industry thought leaders or do I prefer to put into practice my own knowledge and opinions?
  8. Am I willing to walk away from a potential client if our values are not compatible? Am I comfortable recommending a colleague or competitor that might be a better fit?
  9. What do I stand for? What would I say to the industry with certainty if I had to stand up for it? What would I say to potential clients with certainty if I had to stand up for it?

Your answers to these questions will help you to determine where you want to go with your wellness career.  You will be clear about who you are, what you stand for and where you want to go from here.  So even if wellness professionals as a whole cannot agree upon where they want to take the industry, you can be certain of your place in it.

To explore more of this in an environment where we are all considered peers and everyone's insight is valued, check into the Wellness Underground "Un" Wellness Workshop! Visit the workshop website for more information on the next workshop!