Have you ever considered what it could look like to be truly joyful in your work? What if those who lead were committed to cultivating a joyful workplace? Joy isn’t a word we often hear associated with the world of work. In fact, so often it’s the opposite – sometimes a huge sigh, for others a sense of autopilot or non-thinking – disconnected and going through the motions. Even those who may claim they are deeply connected with their work, gaining satisfaction, may struggle to associate the word joy with it.
Joy conveys a deeper sense of connection and goes way beyond any sense of happy-clappy, spaced-out daydreaming. Joy comes from a much deeper place, a place where meaning and purpose reside, a place where we are aligned through our hearts and soul. When we are in contact with joy we have a deep sense of ‘rightness’ with the world – a sense that even if things are tough, our presence and beingness, our actions, and our contributions are making a difference for the better.
Joyful work, therefore, becomes an expression of our inner meaning expressed into the outer world.
This doesn’t have to be huge grand gestures, in fact, the opposite. Joyful work has a simplicity within it which is very aligned with the ability to use our presence and talents to take a step toward better each and every day. To be able to look back on any day and know that by showing up with a good heart, kindness, and compassion we have created an environment where everyone else feels they can do the same. The ‘work’ then flows more easily, the issues get addressed with courage, and the opportunities are embraced with passion and creativity.
For some, this may still feel like it lacks connection with reality but that’s the point – it’s a different reality or at least it could be. A reality where we see work as a gift, as a place where we are building together, as a place where community thrives, and as a place where belonging means being and feeling like a valued member of the group.
How could you be leading the world of work more joyfully?