Is your job role purposeful? Is it meaningful to you? Or is it something that you do because you need to and that it allows you to pay the bills?

Not all of us are blessed to be working in roles that we find fulfilling. And I’m not a believer in the often held view of motivational and transformational gurus, that everyone can find a work role that is inspiring, purposeful and meaningful.

I’ve become even more aware lately that daily events that can have significant impact on other people’s lives can go unnoticed by the rest of the world. It’s only when we become aware of things at a more personal level, where they impact ourselves, a family member, a friend or colleague, that we sit up and take notice.

At work, one customer’s negative experience may go largely unnoticed, until it’s reported on social media and the company gets boycotted by potential and existing customers. All of a sudden, for management of that company… it’s personal.

At home, we hear of this tragedy or that, and it’s not until tragedy hits a family member, friend or colleague that our level of awareness is raised… it’s personal.

Last week, Channel Nine Australia’s TV show ‘Funniest Home Videos’ has been axed after screening for the best part of two decades.

Whether you’ve watched the show or not, it would be fair enough if you thought something like ‘well, that’s no big deal’.

Because that’s exactly what I’ve thought when other TV shows have been axed… no big deal.

Except, that’s not what I think any more. You see, I now realize that when a TV show is axed, there is an entire production crew and ‘talent’ appearing in the show who lose their jobs. The reason I know this is because my eldest son Matt was part of that show’s production crew, and he, like 90% of the production team, lost their job.

I don’t tell you that for any other reason that it’s an example of how when things get personal we view them from a different lens of perception. (And by the way, Matt’s resilience is amazing and he’s getting real creative about what’s next for him).

I read a great article from Business Insider by Tony Schwartz on ‘What Gets You Up In The Morning?’ You can read the article here. What I really liked about Tony’s article is his suggestion for us to come up with a new mantra by asking ourselves “Why are you doing what you’re doing?”

The article is all about purpose; that when we wake up of a morning without purpose in our lives, we live a purposeless life – one without much meaning.

As I’ve written earlier in this post, not all of us are blessed to be working in roles that we find fulfilling. And I’m not a believer in the often held view of motivational and transformational gurus, that everyone can find a work role that is inspiring, purposeful and meaningful. However, when we define our intention for each life role and get clear about our intentions for the people we impact within our various life roles, it is in that process where we can find purpose, meaning and inspiration.

Matt certainly didn’t see his role as production assistant as an inspiring role – however his bigger picture and focus was that this was a step in the right direction for him. His focus was on learning and enjoying the company of the people he was working with, in functioning as a team player and thoroughly enjoyed his role as the ‘audience-warm-up-guy’ interacting with the audience before the show started and during the advertisement breaks. His focus was on intentional learning and on his relationships with the people he worked with.

So if you’re in a role that has purpose, meaning and that inspires you, be grateful for that opportunity. However, if you’re work-role lacks purpose, meaning and requires a bit of a personal effort to get out of bed of the morning to go and do it all again, look for inspiration through setting clear positive intentions for the people you impact through your work role.

You may not have a macro WHY (a clear purpose, meaning or intention), however by focusing on your micro WHY’s (your intentions for the people you impact in your various personal and work life roles), you will be able to live a more purposeful, meaningful and inspirational life – regardless of the work-role you have.

In other words, make the relationships you have in your life more intentional personally – they will matter more, and when things matter more, it means you’ve found purpose, meaning and inspiration.