Is This Soul Enhancing or Soul Diminishing? · ShiftWorkPlace

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Spirit of Work Episode 4: Is This Soul Enhancing or Soul Diminishing?

Is This Soul Enhancing or Soul Diminishing?

Imagine bringing your whole self to an action informed by purpose.

Episode Highlights

Today we delve into the concept of building a sense of purpose using the principle of choosing soul enhancing versus soul diminishing actions in our work behaviour. This episode equips you with tips to increase a sense of purpose at work, while providing you with a tool to autocorrect when you fall short of the ideal.  

Getting to the Bridge of encouragement

The first question to ask yourself is, “Is this soul diminishing or soul enhancing?” Take an instance of a workplace where people are always gossiping. What does that do to the soul? It diminishes the soul and destroys positive company culture. Employees don’t feel they can be their authentic selves, fearing they will be attacked. They can’t admit to mistakes because they anticipate punishment.

In a soul-enhancing workplace, people encourage each other. They’re clear about expectations, communications, and they operate transparently. They think about ways they can help each other, be kind to each other, and progress within the organization. When there’s a mistake, they can talk openly about it because they know they will not be punished for bringing it up. 

Soul Enhancing Versus Soul Diminishing Attitudes, Actions, And Outcomes

Soul enhancing is encouraging, expansive, joyful, creative, and love-promoting. Increasing soul-enhancing behaviors develops virtues—positive qualities admired across cultures such as kindness, helpfulness, courage, and wisdom.

Soul diminishing is discouraging, constrictive, oppressive, and hate-promoting. Increasing soul-diminishing behaviors develops vices—the negative qualities that destroy cultures such as aggression, violence, hatred, superiority, and self-centeredness.

The Essence of Controlling Your Anger

A Buddhist saying is: “The monk who subdues his arisen anger sloughs off as a snake its decrepit old skin.”

Learning to align our emotions and desires with principles that help us engage in soul-enhancing actions can be extremely useful, not only for work but also for our interpersonal relations and other activities outside of work. The more we practice orienting ourselves towards making soul-enhancing thoughts, words and deeds, the more workplaces will reflect virtues, qualities, and powers that make work increasingly pleasant and enjoyable.

Key Takeaways from the Episode:

  1. Purpose is inspiring but has both a light and dark side. You choose the side you want. 
  2. To choose a purpose that nurtures your light side, opt to develop virtues rather than vices which are soul diminishing.
  3. You can ask either in the moment or later in reflection, “Is that/was that…soul enhancing or soul diminishing?”
  4. When you fall short of soul-enhancing thoughts, words, and actions, the answer is to forgive yourself and move forward through service, which is like prayer—it helps us autocorrect.

If you’re finding these episodes helpful, you can purchase the book, The Spirit of Work, Timeless Wisdom, Current Realities, online on Amazon.  On Barnes and Noble or directly from my website, https://shiftworkplace.com/the-spirit-of-work/.

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