Welcome to Part 1 of a 3 part series where I’ll cover my TRIANGLE OF FULFILLMENT!
Perhaps now more than ever, we seem to be searching as a society for new ways to find fulfillment in life. Change may have forced this search upon us, but I believe we should embrace this opportunity to understand fulfillment differently! While we all may define fulfillment in our own ways, I do believe there are some foundational parts of fulfillment that help make the concept much more tangible. When we deal in abstractions, we often don’t make progress – without progress, we won’t reach those next peaks. That is why I developed my Triangle of Fulfillment, and it is my hope that going through the triangle for yourself will help you find and feel fulfillment as it has done for me!
But First, Why a Triangle?
To me, simple is powerful. There may be more complex ways to help others find fulfillment, but I prefer to work through the kinds of questions we all learned at an early age – specifically, “who?” “what?” and “why?” These questions may seem easy to answer at first, but I have found that together through a deep investigation they can help people come to understand, find, and feel fulfillment in a much more real, beneficial way. Each question is essential and equally important to the end goal. As I was putting this exercise together, I could not shake the image of a triangle from my mind. It’s a simple shape, but each side holds power. If one side is lost, the entire shape falls apart – only with all three can the shape exist. Thus, the Triangle of Fulfillment!
A Note Before We Start
As just mentioned, each part of the triangle is going to ask you to consider a seemingly basic question. For the first two of these questions, you’ll be asked to cast your sight into the future to define outcomes you would like to accomplish. It is important to dream big but to also dream smart! It can be tempting to look forward and see ourselves in a drastically different light while simultaneously expecting to see that big change happen quickly – but what good does that kind of vision do us? I’d argue that it actually sets us up for less success than a vision focused on specific, achievable growth in a reasonable time frame. Make your dreams lofty yet attainable – your motivation will thank you in the end!
Now, onto the first part of Triangle of Fulfillment…
The first step to finding fulfillment is clarifying the person you want to be, both internally and externally. In the external sense, I am referring to the version of yourself that you see when you picture an ideal future. What do you look like in that vision? What are you wearing? Where are you? What are you doing? Don’t be afraid to get specific! The more clear of an image you have in your mind, the easier it will be to align your mindsets, habits, and actions to work towards this outcome. If you want to lose some weight, picture yourself down those pounds! If you want to dress differently, see yourself wearing those clothes! If you want to be living in a new space, envision yourself there! Having this external “who?” image in mind is a great first step on the path to fulfillment!
Probably even more important than the external “who?” is the internal one. For this part of the exercise, it may be helpful to make a few lists. First, write down all of the adjectives that you think apply to you right now. It may be tempting to only include the positive ones, but try to be as honest as you can with yourself! For example, my list might include words like “empathetic,” “hard working,” and “fun-loving,” but “impatient” or “moody” might also make that list. Make your list without judgement – this first list is just a launch pad for the second!
Now, make another list that outlines which adjectives you would like to apply to yourself in the future and which adjectives, if any, you’d like to lose moving forward. Again, honesty is key here! Which adjectives from the first list are coming over to the second? Which ones are being left behind? Which new ones are making an appearance? Consider these questions carefully as you further define who you want to be in the future – maybe even write down a few “who?” goals to record your thoughts!
My sincere thanks to you for going through the first part of this fulfillment exercise with me! Check back in two weeks as we explore the second side of my Triangle of Fulfillment –