Work that Helps the “Greater Good”? How About Good for Your Well-being at the Same Time?

So many people don’t know the right direction for their work in the world, for their career or business. Not to mention confusion around how it fits in with the Greater Good.

I love that some people are asking the question about serving in a meaningful way. Yet I know they worry about how to do good work without overwhelm, or whether they can actually find or create meaningful work that can also meet their needs for income and rest.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could find the overlap between feeling good for you and your needs, and feeling good for the needs of the Greater Good, all together? That’s what I call the “Best Use of You”. It feels great, not draining.

What is the best use of you? Good work without burnout? There are simple steps to find your way.

Work can feel great. And it should if it’s truly the best use of you.

I have found ways that work, for me, and the way I came to it seems to also work for others, even in many different circumstances. We are finding ways to serve the Greater Good in our work, without overwhelm. I’ll explain. Continue reading

From Good Girl to Fighting for the *Greater* Good. Let’s Be Paradigm Shifters, Together.

This is a funny combo of quiet and outspoken, and I know I’m not the only one:

I’m a recovering “good girl” who now openly questions the insane harmful systems that dominate around the globe.

In other words, when I was younger, I used to be too quiet in an attempt to seem “good” and to stay safe (beyond the normal level of the positive quiet of introverts).

Now my desire for the Greater Good is winning out, and I’ve become more outspoken, more and more each year.

I am determined to be part of moving from the dominant broken paradigm (money-driven and violent) to a life-affirming, nature-centric paradigm.

I know. It’s a long journey from here to there but I am finding it joyful along the way, whenever I turn in that direction. It’s way better on this road than the old crumbling one. Especially when I connect with kindred spirits.

This “New” Paradigm Is Our Ancestral Heritage

Triskele - symbol of natural resilience

This Triskele is an ancient symbol found in Ireland and other places in Europe, most likely about natural rhythms of the seasons.

A nature-centric world view is what research has shown me is the true ancestral heritage of all humans.

No wonder it feels so much more true to my own nature. No wonder so many are drawn to it.

This true nature paradigm has been alive all along, sometimes in the shadows and in Indigenous cultures around the globe, and it is expanding, despite pressures against it.

I’ll share more of what I mean about what’s unfolding, why it’s hard, and what can help. Continue reading

Video Interview: My Inside View on Career and Business for Introverts

I was interviewed last month about my work. It was a fun conversation. You can watch our intimate conversation here.

We got into a lot of deep topics about making career choices, how self-employment can work for caring introverts, how I deal with some of my challenges, as well as things I’m really passionate about.

I’m amazed at how much of my interests and philosophy we were able to cover.

Topics we covered:

  1. Why people can’t see their own strengths and why knowing them is a key to making your work much easier.
  2. How introversion is a strength (more than you know).
  3. How introverts are naturally good at business and marketing.
  4. The problem with thinking work has to be hard, when it can and should be joyful.
  5. How to price your heart-centered services and deal with the inner conflicts about that. (Finding the sweet spot of fair exchange.)
  6. Introvert-friendly ways to attract clients.
  7. How “going it alone” all the time is a path to burnout and how introverts and solopreneurs find their way of co-creating, including how I co-create. (Always in balance with our needed alone time too.)
  8. My framework for how to clarity and activate the “best use of you” even in this time of great uncertainty.
  9. My courses, including my new career clarity course.
  10. Perfection, the connection to introversion, my struggle with it, and how I get around it and get things done.
  11. How I use my strength of empathy for my marketing.
  12. My passion for anti-racism, inclusion, social justice.
  13. Where to find me online.

I hope you enjoy it.

The interviewer is George Kao, a business consultant/trainer who understands authentic business.

I’d love to hear your reactions to some of what I said. Anything surprising in there? You can comment on my facebook post that has this interview. Or comment below if you prefer.

P.S. By the way, when I talked about co-creation, even for introverts, I don’t mean we need to work in teams. Solo focus time is still really important!! I just mean there are ways to not have to do everything alone. We need others for things like referrals and connections, help with technology, and doing the things you don’t like doing, and for getting useful feedback.

Val Nelson - video interview

How To Sense When It’s the Right Career Path, or Not.

I’m just popping in with a quick tip today…

The key to knowing when it’s the right career or business path for you is to follow what feels True to you. Anything else leads to burnout at some point.

But following your truth? Hmm, that can be confusing and hard to do, huh?

In other words, tune in to the bright spots, which are there somewhere, if you look around. Then double down on that direction. Follow the signs of where it feels good, where you’re smiling. Explore those directions further.

I’m NOT saying look at the bright side and stay where you are, and just buck up. No.

Follow the signs and go towards more and more of what feels right inside. Your body knows. First look for what feels right already as the starting place.

In a way, I’m saying to follow where a pleasant breeze is already blowing!

Most of us are focusing on what’s going wrong (because that’s how the brain works), instead of looking for what is going right, even if it’s still small and difficult to see at times.

When you turn your attention to what feels right, a lot is revealed.

To me, the breeze analogy means you are following what is coming naturally to you, and also what your heart enjoys, and it also means it’s resonating with the people you are here to serve. It feels like doors opening in your heart and mind.

If something you’re trying feels like working against something inside yourself (like your natural strengths or against your values), that’s not going “with the wind.” Make sense?

career path clarity tip

Following the breeze means following your natural strengths. When you do that, you’re in the right direction. When you don’t, it’s exhausting, like fighting the wind.

But That Sounds Scary (or Hard)…

Continue reading

Myths and Truths About How To Find Your Right Career Path

What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?

Too many people live with this question and don’t know how to answer it.

I notice people tend to think one or both of these methods will work for discovering your right career path:

  1. That it will just come in a flash and then you’re all set for life, you know, like it did for so-and-so (supposedly).
  2. That you can do a few exercises in a book or take a quiz online to find the one right path.

Sadly, those thoughts are often accompanied with, “Since those things didn’t work for me, I must be broken.”

I have heard something like that so many times and it hurts my heart. Luckily I can reassure them right away, those paths don’t work for most people. You’re not broken, and there is a way to find your path.

I don’t think either of those expected ways is enough for something like deep clarity and choosing your own specific steps on where you want to go in life. You wouldn’t be here on this page if you could have figured it out on your own by now.

Figuring out why you’re here and how to make it work is big stuff! And yet, the steps to uncover that are simple, just not commonly known.

Continue reading