Can’t find your purpose? 8 characteristics can help you let your purpose unfold…

There’s nothing like good TV watching over the holiday break and my favorite kind of TV is documentaries and anything related to spiritual or self development – boring to some (probably) many – I know – but then, on the other hand, I also like silly, slapstick “Dumb and Dumber”-esque comedies – go figure!  I am who I am!


Anyway, recently I was watching a Super Soul Sunday show on the OWN network with Oprah and she was interviewing Wintley Phipps – a world-renowned vocal artist, education activist, motivational speaker, pastor, and CEO and Founder of the U.S. Dream Academy.  For nearly 30 years, Pastor Phipps has traveled the world delivering messages of hope, advocacy, and equality to many thousands of people.


In this interview with Oprah, Pastor Phipps shared 8 dimensions of characteristics that he feels most reflect the characteristics of God.  Through practicing these characteristics he believes it’s possible to gain clarity about your personal destiny.


I thought these were great traits that reflect what I have observed in many of the most cherished and valued high-performing employees I have known over nearly 25 years in my work.


Can’t find your purpose? 8 characteristics can help you let your purpose unfold…Here are Pastor Phipps 8 traits and my ideas of how I have sensed these traits in top performing, happy employees.  I hope they inspire your New Year’s resolutions – instead of aspiring to achieve something new in 2016 – aspire to BE – to LIVE any (or all) of these traits in all areas of your life – especially at work.  Happy New Year!!


1.  FAITH – faith has been defined as “a strong belief or trust in someone or something”.  Top performers always have faith that their contribution – not just their functional responsibility, but their personal contribution – makes a difference.  They believe that they/their team/their function is important and can make something better.  Do you have faith that your functional role makes a difference?  That you make a difference for others?

2.  VIRTUE/MORAL GOODNESS – in essence this is about doing the right thing – the right thing for the greater good – not just for some (and certainly not just for yourself).  Seek to understand what all stakeholders are trying to accomplish and  decide to act only on opportunities and ideas that benefit all.  Seek to find “more to all and less to none” solutions.

3.  KNOWLEDGE & WISDOM – I believe knowledge is what you learn/what you know and wisdom is being able to apply it for the greatest benefit.  Always have something active and alive in your life that you are learning (reading, in school for, researching, etc.), and always act from the experience you have up to that time in your life – even if you only have 2 days of experience with something – that’s 2 days more than so many other people have.

4.  PATIENCE – I believe that goodness always prevails over evil.  Patience (not doing more or raising a bigger “stink”), is often the key – this characteristic goes hand in hand with faith and wisdom.  If you believe that what you are contributing is for the greater good of the situation, you will never lose in the end.  Wisdom enables you to contribute all you can and faith enables you to wait for an outcome that you know will be in the interest of the greater good.  If evil seems to still be in control – then that just means the battle isn’t over yet. Operate on behalf of the greater good, contribute all the wisdom and moral goodness you can and then wait for the outcome.  Patience is key.

5.  SELF-CONTROL – some of the worst performers I have witnessed in my career are people who are focused on trying to control or change others.  The only control you ever have is over yourself.  “How people treat you is their karma.  How you react is yours.”  Wayne Dyer

6.  RESPECT FOR WHAT IS SACRED – don’t like office politics?  Neither does anyone else – including people who seem to be great office politicians!  Don’t think of it as having to be “political”.  Think of it as navigating both the formal and informal structures of your workplace – it’s about understanding how things really work and being respectful of those dynamics.  He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces.”  Sun Tzu

7.  KINDNESS – you don’t have to like everybody (actually, you don’t have to like anybody), but kindness is a must regardless of how you feel about anyone.  Remember, you catch more flies with honey, than with vinegar.  I have watched many high-performing, highly educated and experienced people who left tons of “dead bodies” in the wake of their efforts be “valued” (but not really – never as fully as you might think).  A good attitude – kindness especially – trumps lack of anything (including skill, education, experience) because anything else can easily be developed within the company’s means!  A company can’t make someone nice who just isn’t nice.  This is a no-brainer.

8.  LOVE – all you need is love!  At work?  Yes – at work too!  Often we don’t love every aspect of our jobs – but do we need to?  Focus on the aspects of your work you do love – be that certain tasks, people, projects, the commute, the ability it provides you to provide for those you really love and care about.  Focus on what you love and pardon the rest.  Be focused to find what you love in any situation/dynamic. Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.”  Mother Teresa

About Gina Calvano

Gina Calvano is a certified coach and Senior Professional in Human Resources, with over 20 years of experience as a talent management professional in both the private and non-profit sectors. With a unique approach, she combines her strategic corporate expertise and accreditations with metaphysics and transformational thinking which has resulted in people all over the world feeling good about themselves and connected to a sense of purpose.

She created the Success Readiness Bootcamp™, a step by step process that enables people to easily discover their unique talents and abilities and match them to majors, jobs, industries and leisure pursuits. Gina is also the co-author of Breakthrough! Inspirational Strategies for an Audaciously Authentic Life with NY Times Best Selling Authors Marci Shimoff, Janet Bray Attwood and Chris Attwood and Powerful Connections Made Easy™ with Aprille Trupiano, and is currently working on her next book — Caged in My Cube: The Turnaround Guide For Loving The Job You Hate.

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