What is Your Sweet Spot?

In a recent conversation, I was asked this question and as I reflected on it, I recognized how important it is to understand your sweet spot. These are the things which are the magic of your job, where you get the maximum impact for your effort. They feel natural, easy and have you feeling on top of the world, whether these are specific tasks or accomplishments, or they relate to the your work environment. Most often you will find these at the intersection of your passion, skills, and values. Knowing what these are and making sure they are a regular part of your day will help you find joy at work as discussed in a previous post.

Let me share with you a few of mine:

  • eLearning Development – I enjoy the entire design process but for me there is something about the actual development of an eLearning module that is magical. It is the perfect blend of problem solving, artistry, and technical expertise. When I get to this part of the process, I get very focused and in the zone. I enjoy problem solving of figuring out how to make accomplish difficult interactions, and blending my expertise with the development software with an artistic eye to bring together an effective course. When I finish, I am excited to put the course in front of learners, but sad that the development phase is over.
  • Learner’s Excitement – Nothing puts me on the mountaintop quite like talking to participants in a training session and hearing what they learned and their excitement to put it into use. As soon as I get that feedback, whatever it took to prepare and present the session, whatever challenges presented themselves, they just all melt away. Learner excitement is contagious and I love to catch it with them. As an instructional designer, I am selling new ideas, understandings, and a different way of looking at things, and when learner not only get’s it but is also excited about it, it is magic.
  • Co-worker Connection – Have you ever had that moment in a meeting when you look at a co-worker and you can each tell exactly what the other is thinking and understand the situation with just a glance? If you have experienced that, then you probably understand another of my sweet spots. This isn’t something that happens overnight but comes from working with someone over time where both people have taken the time to know and understand the other. This typically is a symptom of a comfortable environment where sharing of ideas and asking questions is encouraged. Just being easily understood and understanding others can be the magic that takes a team or company to excellence.
  • World/Community Impact – Some people want to individually have a huge impact on the world, but for me, I want to be a part of an organization that makes a valuable impact. This means different things to different people, but for me, there is magic when my employer is innovative and is pushing the world forward in positive directions. This could be in serving a neglected population and changing their lives, impacting whole communities with environmental/health measures or pushing forward technology to bring about new discoveries.

If you have never thought about your sweet spots, I encourage you to reflect on what you do and what moments come forward as being highs. Look for the patterns in these to identify the tasks, accomplishments, and environmental factors that are a part of your magic.

To learn more about this, check out these resources: