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Mar 01 2019
ICEL RECAP The Art of Knowing: A Framework for Being Happy at Work and in Life
Melissa Mickelsen, CCE, Geneva Rock Products

Stefanie used the acronym A.R.T. to provide an outline for her presentation: Address, Recognize and Take Action.

First, address what your drivers are. What makes you tick? What are your values and skills? Once we've identified these drivers, we can use them in goal setting and planning, to set boundaries and shift perspectives, and to develop greater compassion for others. If we know what we value, we can more easily step aside and refrain from judging others based on our values, allowing them to make decisions within their own frameworks.

We should also determine our skills by asking ourselves what we love to do and what comes easy to us. We find a sweet spot where our values and skills align. But we also need to be aware of blind spots. If we find something getting in our way, we should ask ourselves who can help us think through a problem and overcome it. We should seek out guidance and support and continue asking questions until we find answers. When possible, we can even offload items from our list by sharing responsibilities with others. Not only does this remove some of our burden, but it also helps develop relationships in which others feel they can come to us for support and help.

Next, recognize your ability. Ask yourself, "Is this issue or concern within my control?" Learn to recognize both what you can control and what you cannot. If an issue is within your control, ask yourself if you're good at handling the issue. If you are, move forward! If not, consider setting a goal to develop a skill that will better enable you to handle it. If an issue is not within your control, seriously ask yourself why you're still worrying about it.

Finally, take action. Set personal goals that will make you a better human and make you feel better. When setting goals, the first step is to determine the goal and write it down. Decide if it is measurable (fact or statistic based) or unmeasurable (feeling or feedback based.) Unmeasurable goals are the ones that most often help us develop "soft skills," such as listening, empathy and compassion. The second step is to determine when you want to have the goal accomplished. Enter this date in your calendar and word it as if you've already achieved the goal. It is often helpful to break larger goals into mini goals. Avoid setting several goals with the same accomplishment dates. Allow yourself to focus on the goal at hand and don't overwhelm yourself. Be patient and realize that life happens. But continue to move forward. And remember to be bold and challenge yourself.

Gaining greater insight into our values, skills and abilities will help us recognize sweet spots to build on and blind spots to work on. It will help broaden our perspectives and focus our goals to the items that will bring the most satisfaction and happiness. Stefanie closed her presentation with a quote from Thomas Jefferson: "Nothing gives a person so much advantage over another as to remain always cool and unruffled under all circumstances."