Episode 283 Feeling accomplished: But now, what’s next?


Explore the state of feeling accomplished and how to navigate the next stage with curiosity and self-awareness.

In today’s episode, Anna explores the state of feeling accomplished and the potential for further growth and development, even at a point of perceived success. Anna encourages listeners to reflect on their current state, values, and strengths to prepare for the next stage of their journey. She emphasises the importance of remaining curious, seeking feedback, and considering all areas of life in pursuit of a more fulfilling and balanced existence.

00:00 Traditional success, but is it enough?

06:06 Seek feedback from various sources to grow.

07:16 Reflect on health, relationships, career, and growth.

10:23 Celebrate achievements, reflect, explore, push boundaries, grow.

*Resources mentioned during the episode*

1:1 Coaching & Mentoring – If you’re looking for one-to-one support to help you achieve your specific life and business goals, Anna has a limited number of spots for individual coaching and mentoring. onestepoutside.com/coaching

Feeling Accomplished: Navigating Next Steps

Over the last few weeks, I’ve been digging into some of the more negative states of being when it comes to career and development. So burnout, busyness and boredom. And today, and over the next few weeks, I wanted to shift gears into some more positive states. So where we’re kind of aspiring to be and, of course, how we can get there and to kick things off, I want to look at this state of feeling accomplished. So to some extent, things are fine in a way, right? They’re good, yeah. I’ve achieved a lot. I’m in a good place, comfortable, ticking the boxes, being productive, all hunky dory.

So what’s the problem? Well, there is no problem, but I think we can do better than that. So feeling accomplished, it’s a great achievement. There is really a huge amount of fulfilment that comes from, as I said, ticking off the boxes, working towards goals and achieving them. I think that’s really one of the biggest motivators for us as human beings. It’s growth, it’s challenge, it’s development. Right. So we’re in a really good place where we’ve achieved, perhaps, the goals we set. We defined what success was for ourselves and we achieved that.

Or we’ve just, if we can call it, just worked towards the more traditional definitions of success in terms of career progression. We’ve got that promotion we’ve hit where we wanted to hit in terms of leadership role or growing the business or whatever that is. Perhaps also in our personal life, right. We have the 2.4 children or whatever the average is now, got a nice car, we’ve built a nice house here by the sea and whatever it is. So you’re feeling pretty good. So that’s a great place to be. However, it’s an interesting point to reflect and to think about. Okay, is this sort of the end? And if you’re young, which I think most of you are, in fact, anybody listened to this, I would wager, is young enough to still have a lot of oomph in your life.

Years and decades ahead, hopefully, knock on wood. And so this is a great time to reflect and look ahead. When we’re in that comfort zone of delivering within our wheelhouse, we’re known, we’re respected, we’re well established, we’re getting results. Rather than wait until you’re in an uncomfortable position, back again to burnout boredom, the organisation is restructuring, your role is at risk, your business isn’t doing so well, there’s an economic downturn, blah, blah, blah. Some of the things are happening now, then, being proactive and thinking about how you might strengthen your position, further diversify, make sure you’re staying competitive and engaged are really valuable. So it’s the classic thing. You don’t want to be updating your cv and trying to network with people when you’re already unemployed. Of course you will and you should.

But better to build that network, positioning, branding and so on, when you’re not in a desperate position, because you’re in a much stronger position, as we all know, both confidence wise and on paper, you just are in a more appealing candidate. Right. For example. So I really do think, although there is no burning urgency, when you’re in this place of feeling good about what’s going on, that is a great moment to reflect. Because there’s no urgency. Exactly. That’s the point. There’s no immediate need or necessity, there’s no pressure to do something.

You’re in this really luxurious position where you could stay where you are and really enjoy it for years to come, but perhaps you don’t want to stay there the next one, two, three more decades. And so that’s the moment to reflect on what could be the next shift when the time comes. And it all starts with curiosity. So, looking back into the past, how did you get here? And where is here, by the way? What are you doing? What is it that you’re doing and understanding, sort of the ups and downs, the highlights and maybe low lights of your journey that got you here in the first place. What do you really love about the work that you do about your life right now, as well as what don’t you love so much? What are your strengths? Your super strengths, if you want to call them that. Your personality strengths, yes. Your hard skills, your soft skills, all the usual stuff. Importantly, your values.

Right. What’s really, really important to you? And then you’ll see if there is a disconnect, perhaps, between those values and where you are now. But it’s really all about self awareness, about who you are and what’s important to you. And this understanding, this awareness, is going to serve as your compass now to direct you towards the next part of your journey. So having that vision of the future, grounding yourself in your values, having a really clear picture of your strengths and your skills, that’s what’s going to sort of arm you, equip you to navigate this next stage. And I want to emphasise that it’s not just about chasing that next goal, right. Because there is no rush, first of all. And secondly, you should be enjoying celebrating, reaping the rewards of all the hard work you’ve done to get here.

So it’s not in any way to undermine, to take away from the incredible achievements. And if you’re happy where you are again, that’s a great place to be. But you’ll be more empowered to navigate any setbacks in the future and to make a different choice should you so wish to in the future. If you’ve done kind of the prep work of understanding this kind of thing now, and maybe with that increased awareness of knowing what you might need to do to achieve that next stage, you could already start get the wheels in motion, as it were, to not leave that until that day when it becomes suddenly very urgent and important. Now, you also don’t want to distract from the things that are working right, so you don’t want to stop doing all the things, let’s say, that are making your business thrive right now. You don’t want to completely step back from being an incredible top performing employee and then sabotage the success that you’ve got. So we’re not talking about that. You actually need to maintain that momentum in all the business as usual while you’re exploring, reflecting on what else there might be for the next stage. 

And one great way to do that, by the way, is to get feedback. And if you’re an employee, you’re in the fortunate position where you can get that from your boss, from your team, from your employees as well in the organisation, whether formally or informally, from mentors and so on, in the work capacity to really understand where they see your strengths are, what the opportunities are, what perhaps they have in terms of ideas for what might be opportunities next and so on, what’s in the future, what’s in the pipeline. And by the way, then if your boss has a very different vision to yours, you’ll have a clear idea of that as well. And also, by all means, from your personal life, right, from your partner, from your family, talk to them about how they feel things are going. And maybe there’s a disconnect there as well, by the way, or maybe it’s working really well for you all. One of the frameworks that I share quite a bit here is my five l’s. So if you want to learn more about it, I’ll put that out there right away. As to say, if you go to onestepoutside.com success, onestepoutside.com success, you’ll get the details on what the five l’s are and a little assessment, but really it’s a tool to help you and a framework to help you think about the different areas of your life that matter.

So your health and well being, relationships, your career in terms of the impact you’re making and legacy you’re leaving and so on, as well as how you’re growing and developing and then all the fun stuff as well. So it might again help you to take a step back and reflect on what’s working, what’s not, where there might be opportunity to go a bit deeper or some area of your life that needs more attention perhaps where could you feel more fulfilled? Maybe it’s not working so much, and maybe it’s not work that needs more attention. Maybe right now you have accomplished and are accomplishing, you’re on track when it comes to the career domain. But there is something in your personal life that perhaps is not where you’re feeling so fulfilled and that requires or desires more attention and energy from you. So see where curiosity leads you really. I suppose the only other couple of things to say is sort of some practical things that you might try and I don’t want to impose things, certainly things that I’m not using myself in some cases. But of course, gratitude exercises, for example, can be really helpful at the end of the day just to reflect on it helps a lot. In fact, when you’re in some of those negative stages that we talked about as well, the busyness and boredom and so on, it can help you to be really grateful and aware of what you do have because it’s so easy again to get caught up in chasing that next thing.

So being present and being grateful can be really powerful. It doesn’t mean that you don’t want something else as well, or instead, but it does give you a much more positive framework to start. So, gratitude exercises, journaling perhaps before you go to bed first thing in the morning. Who knows what kind of insights come from that vision boarding. I’m sure I’ve got episodes on that in the past on how to just organically really sort of flip through magazines, pull out words and pictures and things that resonate with you and see what might shed some light on gaps or things that could excite you in the future. And all sorts of exercise I could give you in terms of thinking back to what did you want to be when you were growing up and how would you spend your time if you took a year off? What conferences would you go to if you could go to anything? Or where would you travel to? What books do you love reading, what podcasts? What are the topics that are really exciting. You really making sure that you’re sort of taking a huge, big perspective on what could be interesting to you. You can still make intentional choices not to do them, but let’s say an example I often give from personal experience.

You’ve always wanted to be a writer, write a book. Well, is now maybe as good a time as any to dust that ambition off the shelf and take it down and have a look at how you might make that happen? Or you want to travel to South America? That was something I wanted to do and I took a sabbatical in 2013 and travelled there three months. I’d still love to go back. I didn’t really spend a lot of time Brazil, didn’t go to Colombia and some other places, so I’d love to spend more time there. But what are the things that you don’t want becoming regrets further down the line, essentially. So some pretty big question, big picture questions to ask. I need a break. I’m going to go for a walk after this episode.

I’ve been recording a lot of episodes and I can feel my tongue running away from me. But I think this is actually a really fun one. So I’ll cut this short and leave you to reflect. Because again, to summarise, you’re in a great place, you’re feeling accomplished, you’ve achieved a lot of what you want to achieve, maybe everything, but I’m sure there’s more. You can celebrate that, be grateful, enjoy and continue the exploration. Keep pushing those boundaries. What more could be possible if you’ve achieved all this? What other areas of your life could you also bring? That same energy, motivation and talent that you’ve brought to the workspace. What more is there? So, getting curious and reflecting on what could be more values aligned for you, more challenging for you, more balanced for you, more fulfilling, whatever that is.

Right? So something. And it’s so individual that it’s impossible to diagnose it on a general podcast. But something could be needing or wanting more attention from you and it’s really worth exploring what that might be. Okay, I’d love to hear your insights on this one. And if you do want any exercise and things, I have a lot. So you can ping me on your favourite social platform if we’re connected, or email podcast at Onestep outside. Okay, see you next week. Bye.


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If you’re looking for one-to-one support to help you achieve your specific life and business goals, Anna has a limited number of spots for individual coaching and mentoring.


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