Do You Have Enough Hope?

Given the ongoing uncertainty in most businesses and economies, are you finding it hard to hold on to your hope at work?

Following several years of rolling redundancies, downgrades of profits and slashing of budgets it’s natural to worry if tomorrow, next month or even next year will really be any better at work.  You might have also quietly started to wonder if you – and your leaders – have what it takes to turn your hopes for the future into a bottom-line reality that sees you earning what you’re worth.

Let’s face it we’ve been in a tough market and for most of us wins haven’t come easy.

Feeling low on hope in times of uncertainty is completely natural, but given studies have found hope has a direct impact on our confidence, commitment and productivity I couldn’t help but wonder what we can do to turn our hopes around. So I went and asked the world’s leading hope researcher.

Can Hope Be Improved?

Dr Shane Lopez, is a Gallup Senior Scientist and Research Director of the Clifton Strengths Institute where he studies the links between hope, strengths, academic success and overall wellbeing,  and collaborates with scholars around the world on these issues.

“The most challenging thing for organizations in times of uncertainty is having hopeful leaders,” explained Shane. This is because Gallup have found the most influential leaders give their people four things to make life better: a sense of stability; an emotional feeling of trust; an emotional feeling of compassion and; a lifting up by hope.

“What we need most right now are leaders who can deal with uncertainty, but still lead with hope.”

So how can leaders pull this off and what can do you do if your leader is lacking in hope? In this episode of Chelle McQuaid TV, Shane explains three things we can each do – no matter what our role – to improve our levels of hope and move towards the outcomes we want at work.

What Are You Doing To Boost Your Hope?

The work of your head and your heart, hope happens when your rational self meets your emotional self. Research suggests it not only lift your spirits, but buoys your energy, makes life seem worthwhile and changes your day-to-day behavior.

Shane recommends three ways you can improve your levels of hope at work:

  • Pursuing a project you’re truly excited about – start a passion project even if it’s not a priority for your business.  Feeling excited about the future helps you get through the grind of each day in difficult times. Some organizations have found even giving people just 30 minutes, once a week, of “dream time” to pursue something they love has a positive impact on engagement, productivity and revenue growth, even in economically difficult times.
  • Knocking down obstacles – find ways to make work easier to get done.  Get rid of policies, processes and other obstacles that are slowing you down to create more positive emotions and energy to keep you focused on the things that matter.
  • Spending time with hope filled people – learn from other people who are filled with hope to help you figure out ways to get over the hurdles you’re facing and reignite your sense of excitement about what is yet to come.

You can measure your levels of hope by taking this survey, or watch Shane talk about how hope impacts our performance here or grab his book “Making Hope Happen”.

Do you have enough hope at work?

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