Addressing life issues and establishing well-being at the workplace

Is a job only about success, innovation & strategy or does it include the development of your whole self?

“Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” – John Wooden

While your company is primarily focused on its ROI and market share, it also has a high regard for you the employee. It hired you for your talent, performance aptitude, creative problem-solving and ability to thrive in the company culture.

Regardless of what age you are hired, you continue to develop as an adult with cycles of personal growth and maturity. There are about six stages, starting at age 18 and continuing to 66 and beyond. In each age frame you experience important breakthroughs and transitions, allowing new insight and growth. Generally, you are able to integrate your knowledge and life experience and then continue to change until you move on to the next stage.

You can be determined and hardworking with incredible momentum and focus, doing business and influencing policy, building relationships, on top of your game – and before you notice you are no longer making progress. Your energy shifts and you may feel like you are spiraling downward or just “opting out.” You may simply be adjusting to a new stage. Though you may not feel like it, you will self guide through this transition like when you were younger. You then realize you have matured and think more clearly, creating ideas in ways you never thought possible.

A renewed focus

Today there is more attention being given to a new awareness of an ongoing issue. There is an acute need to acknowledge a necessity to take time off for mental health, which is also important for human development.

This topic has been a recent focus in the news, like earlier this month when a CEO responded in a positive manner to his employee (a web developer who suffers from chronic depression and anxiety) when she was honest about taking a mental health day. The email exchange between the CEO and employee quickly went viral.

Along those lines, some companies have revised their policies to include mental and emotional health care where employees can receive confidential coaching with an outside specialist.

Self image

“What is necessary to change a person is to change his awareness of himself” – Abraham Maslow

It is your responsibility to identify your whole self in every stage of development. Confidence is the foundation of trusting your thoughts and behavior. As you speak to yourself, be clear, honest, supportive and compassionate in every way. When in doubt, simply add up all the things you have accomplished in your life (small or big).

If you cling to an out-dated self image, it will limit the possibilities of your present self. Your ingenuity is trying to express itself. Listen to yourself and be conscious of what you say. When you are overly self-critical, it is not your truth, but an old program of judgment and a long history of poor self-esteem.

Do a self-check the next time you talk to your boss, project leader and co-workers. Do you ask questions clearly? Is your behavior authentic? What are your biases? Do you notice them? Are you willing to be honest? Are you open to changing your attitudes, judgments and reactions? How does your work change when your boss’s leadership style takes care of you?

Many companies have developed new policies that address life issues and well-being. In today’s progressive environment you should never feel you can’t address who you are. You need to bring your whole self to work.

Lastly, which company face are you? Are you the face with a nice smile that hides behind self-doubt, negative performance issues and challenging problems? Or are you the face that communicates trust and self-confidence, who is accountable to the company and your whole self?

If you know yourself, you will find your way through difficult times. Maybe you go back to school or redefine your leadership role through company support and facilitation.

Every day brings an opportunity for finding positive solutions to life’s challenges and stresses. You may feel trapped or insecure, fear your own thoughts and desperately need support, but do not know how to ask for it. These conflicts are often the door to the next stage of your development. The key is communication and trust.

Ghaile Windeck, M.A., is an international coaching specialist at Advantage Learning Solutions LLC in Vancouver. She can be reached at 503.754.4151 or