(In honor of Valentine’s Day, here’s a section from my book, “Bring Your Superpowers to Work: Your Guide to More Clarity, Confidence & Control,” that you might find of added relevance this holiday. Download the first chapter in print and audio when you sign up at the top of the page, and buy the book here.)
Be the Love
Case in point: I had a big meeting with a new client company on Valentine’s Day one year. (We didn’t plan it that way—it was just another workday.) When I arrived, the receptionist’s desk was filled with flowers, chocolates, and packages waiting to be delivered throughout the facility, all potential expressions of someone’s love for some employee there.
It occurred to me that we don’t have any problem bringing the chocolate or the roses into our workplaces–but what about the love? Doesn’t seem to be a lot of room for that.
It seems like we decided to treat “love” as a four-letter word at work. “Nothing to love here,” said an overworked former colleague with thumbs-a-flying on his Blackberry. ” “All I love is getting out of here at 6,” said another friend.
Later that same Valentines’ Day, I had drinks with a private client of mine who was truly soaring through her work. She’d just earned industry honors, gotten a raise, and really felt centered in her superpower space. And a year earlier, she was ready to quit. How things can change!
I told her my story about seeing all the roses and chocolates and shared my thought about the absence of love at work. She told me, “Darcy, I never worry about that. In my office, I am the love.” And in looking at her smile, I knew that was true.
My client is the exception right now. How did we manage to practically eliminate one of the most positive, forward-moving emotions from our workplaces? How did we get to be afraid of love? Emotion, after all, is what causes motion. Love brings positive, productive motion; fear just keeps moving us backwards.
So, as my valentine to you—no matter what time of year you’re reading this—I offer you one of the most powerful ways you can stay in your superpower space, all the time, anywhere, no matter what. Just be the love.
Love the people you’re with. Make time each day to connect with at least one person, whether it’s a hallway hello or a quick smile via instant message. Pay attention to their superpowers and help them along (you can give them a copy of this book, or send them a link to our blog at www.RedCapeRevolution.com.) Our experience at work is greatly influenced by our experience with others, and so adding more love to your day-to-day experiences will rub off on your experience with your work.
Extend your love to the annoying people, the haters, the slackers. A tip that always works for me is to exchange my frustration for empathy. Instead of thinking “Grr—David is so annoying!!” I switch my response to “Hmm—I’m so fortunate I don’t approach life like David does.” David gets a healthy dose of my empathy and even love—and he doesn’t even know it.
Love the environment you’re in. Sick of your taupe & grey corporate workspace? How can you change it? I once took an old piece of Hawaiian patterned fabric and tucked it under the acoustic tiles in my ceiling (you know, those things you toss the pencils up into?). In minutes, I had a colorful curtain of“wallpaper” with no muss or fuss—and nobody cared. Spend lots of time in the car? Add a pillow to your seat, a six-pack of water or some fun audiobooks for the ride. No matter where you work, what little thing can you do to love your space more?
And finally, love the work you do. After all, this is the mecca of staying in your superpower space, right? The work you do when you bring your superpowers to work matters more than ever, making more of a difference for your company, community, and your world. We spend a lot of time in work mode—why not love all of it?
How can you be the love at work? Reply to this post below or tell us on Facebook or Twitter.
Order your copy of Bring Your Superpowers to Work today!