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I walked out of the deli of the shop with my sandwich.  I was greeted by a lovely view, looking across the Grand Canal Dock in Dublin’s city centre. A fairly intense sense of gratitude struck me at that moment. Curiously, it was unrelated to the sandwich or the view (both were worthy of gratitude). It was gratitude for what I am doing in my new work venture. And also gratitude for things that are happening while building the business.

I feel very connected to Inspo, the business I am pursuing since March. Making people more connected, motivated, productive and happy in what they do makes me feel more connected, motivated, productive and happy in what I do. The harder I work at it, the stronger that feeling is. So part of the feeling in that moment stemmed from an awareness of how lucky I am to be doing what I’m doing.

The second contributing factor stems from things that have happened since starting Inspo. Such as, the new feeling of driving my own destiny. The unbelievable support of family, friends, former workmates, college buddies and teammates in sport. The fantastic opportunity to form a new working relationship with my previous employer, PwC. The use of the brilliant facilities at the Bank of Ireland Innovation Centre in Grand Canal Dock. All these things contributed to that deep sense of gratitude in that moment.

I’ve experienced this feeling on many occasions in the last two months. For me they’re like fabulous bursts of validation reminding me that I’m doing something that really works for me right now.

It’s a worthwhile exercise to ask yourself the following question: how often does my job give me a sense of gratitude?  That’s in terms of gratitude for the personal connection you have to what you do. And also in terms of gratitude as a result of things that happen during the working week. Such as a nice work lunch, the flexibility to finish early or meeting a very cool person. If you get a satisfactory answer to this question than validation is always good to receive. If your answer leaves you with room for improvement consider this question, what achievable changes can I make (small or significant) to improve the level of gratitude I feel in work?

Remember that the opportunity for change is two fold. You can improve the overall personal connection to what you do and you can increase how often you experience gratitude in your week. The latter may simply involve being more aware of gratitude when it arises at work. As an aid, I write down 5 things every morning that I was grateful for the day before.

The more gratitude we feel towards work the more positively disposed we are to it. The great thing is, this positive disposition benefits us not only in the workplace. We take this improved feeling of positivity into our every day lives.

A prize worth pursuing.