Six ways to combine a job search with your spiritual path
Confessions from a job management coach on how to use surrender, service and grace to make your next career move
GUEST COLUMN: JEFF ROBINSON — From July 2005 until approximately April 2006, I began a spiritual transformation that changed the course of my life in some amazing and often difficult ways, and which continues to this day.
After more than 20 years of seeking a spiritual path that made sense to me, a friend introduced me to one of the best selling books on spirituality ever written: Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda.
Yogananda-ji came to the U.S. in the 1920’s and stayed until the time of his death in 1952, introducing hundreds of thousands to the spiritual path of Kriya Yoga. He is widely credited as being the driving force in bringing yoga to the west.
I couldn’t put the book down, and literally fell in love with both Yogananda and his teachings.
Almost immediately, I felt at home in a way that I never had before. Here, where the mystical teachings of the east and west are brought together, was a group of people that all experienced God the same way that I did. On December 19, 2005 I became initiated on the path of Kriya Yoga.
I spent the next nine months doing little more than meditating and spreading my love to any one who wanted it (and even some who didn’t). Eventually, I arrived at the point reached by most people with a spiritual experience, moving from the private to the social. I realized that I was supposed to take this new found peace and do some work in the world with it.
Job searching as a spiritual journey
The only problem was that I really only knew how to do one thing — helping people to find jobs. So I set about the task of taking the job search process I had created and shedding the light of spirit on it, to the extent that I was capable.
I’ve been in the career management field for over 20 years, during which time I developed a method of job seeking combining what I had learned from my years as a top-performing salesperson with the time-honored principles of networking and career development. And it worked.
I’ve helped literally thousands of people, from welfare recipient to CEO, in almost every industry, ranging from not-for-profit and education to corporate America. I aided my clients to find jobs they loved by showing them how to sell themselves as a product on the marketplace of employment.
And therein laid the problem.
I didn’t want to teach people how to sell anymore
Not that selling is a bad thing. In fact, the most successful salespeople are the ones that listen and truly put their customers first. Selling seems to connote persuasion, profit, and controlling the outcome, and if there was anything I had learned from my spiritual journey it was that we don’t control anything. In fact, the more we can get out of God’s way and surrender, the better off we are.
I no longer wanted to characterize people as a product or commodity to be bartered for the sole purpose of getting something in return. My spiritual awakening had shown me that each person is an unique expression within the kaleidoscope of divinity, where God herself could have a particular experience on the physical plane.
Indeed, my mystical study and daily meditation had taught me that we are not put here to learn or experience anything for only ourselves; we are here to serve the Divine through service to others.
That was then. Now, I would no longer talk about selling products and controlling outcomes and personal glory. My new job-finding methodology would be about surrender, service, and honoring the divinity that is within each of us. This was the genesis of the six core principles I call the Service Quest job search philosophy. My sincerest wish is that they inspire you to discover and be true to the unique expression of divinity within you. Namaste.
Philosophies for a spirit-based job search
1. You were endowed by our creator with a certain set of innate abilities and beliefs that are yours alone. Nobody can take them away from you, but they are not yours to keep to yourself. They are given to you to share with others.
2. As you both embrace and remain true to those abilities and beliefs, the more fulfilled you will be and the more effectively you will perform your chosen personal, communal, and work duties.
3. There is an employer out there who values the abilities and beliefs that you embody and needs them to accomplish the goals of the organization. In a work setting, your abilities translate to what you can do, and your beliefs translate to how you do it.
4. The organization that values what you offer isn’t just going to show up in your life, you have to go out and find it. This is the quest — the responsibility that we each have to co-create our lives with our creator.
5. While on your quest to find the employer that values what you can do and how you do it, you are going to meet many people you won’t be able to help. This is not a rejection of you; it just means that this is not where the world needs you most at this time. Keep being yourself and keep looking.
6. The rewards we receive in this world, monetary or otherwise, are usually in direct proportion to the service we render to others. These rewards may not come at the time or place that we expect, but they will come nevertheless. This is one of God’s greatest laws.
Jeff Robinson is the founder of Career Quest and creator of the Service Quest approach to job seeking. For more information, visit Service Path.
Looking for work or helping someone who is? Visit the Soul’s Code slideshow: Five Spiritual Ways to $urvive Lob Loss, for healing tips.