For the last six months, I have been coaching and mentoring a senior HR manager in engineering. She is amazing at what she does, passionate, knowledgeable and has a bursting mindset to grow and further develop. What she was noticing though, was her motivation to kick off each week was lagging and this was unusual for her.

empathy versus sympathy

We explored this together throughout a session, and my question to her was, “What has changed?”. This is still one of the most powerful coaching questions as it helps identify the actual moment things became different and what lurks behind that, the reason.

We discovered that as her team had rapidly expanded in May this year, she had changed what she usually did on a Monday which was to meet suppliers, external stakeholders and clients and was now always office-bound at the start of each week.

Knowing this, we identified that being out in the coalface, building relationships, nurturing and working with key stakeholders was a large part of what got Anna motivated. Satisfying these motivators is what gives her a “pep in her step”, and too often we may know what lights us up but we simply manage this, not satisfy it.

Anna and I mapped out a plan to tackle this which was to simply have Monday out in the field where possible so she could kick off the week with what energises her the most.

Over the last 6 weeks, Anna has noted how much better she feels starting the week off with what deeply motivates her. This sets the tone for the week ahead and amplifies a positive mindset, productivity and happiness.

What lights you up?

Worth thinking about what lights you up the most in your role and how you can bring this in at the start of your week, whatever day that might be.

Key tips:


  • What is that you love the most in your role/business?

This will be what gives you the most excitement, energy and usually feels easy.


  • How will you incorporate this into your role and at a time that you find most motivating?

Be a realist but also remember you can control more than you think by simply planning, setting boundaries and resetting these regularly.


  • What is different in the way you feel and act?

When doing what lights you up, you will feel energised and inflow.

Remember, when we are energised and doing what is congruent to our whole self at work we can’t but help be lit up and on purpose.


Lead to be limitless…



Renee Giarrussso Director RG Dynamics Pty Limited Limited Leadership

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Renée is a mentor, coach, expert facilitator and keynote speaker. She is the author of ‘Limitless Leadership’ and co-author of ‘Leaders of Influence’.

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