My podcast guest, Maria Sirois, spoke about the benefits of creating a life of meaning, purpose and joy. She’s a master teacher, facilitator and author. As a positive psychologist and international consultant, she focuses on the resilience of the human spirit when under pressure and/or during significant transition. Known for her wisdom, authenticity and rampant humor, Maria brings a depth of experience in leadership development and stress management for corporate and non‐profit professionals. She develops curriculum for the Wholebeing Institute, is on faculty at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health. She’s the author of two books: A Short Course in Happiness After Loss and Every Day Counts.
What you’ll learn in S2 EP 7: Maria Sirois – Creating a Life of Meaning, Purpose, and Joy:
- Getting unstuck and living a bigger life
- Finding your passion and purpose
- A strategy for finding work you love
- Seeking our self-worth from within, not from external approval
- The importance of getting quiet and listening to that still small voice within
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Show Notes S2 EP 7: Maria Sirois Creating a Life of Meaning, Purpose, and Joy
What is a woman of value to Maria?
A woman of value is both internal and external. Internally, she’s rooted in her values, and she’s clear about what the core of what her being is. She’s capable of reflection and growth. Externally, she’s someone who contributes less harm and more good in the world.
Pivotal moment of stepping into her value
She was in her late thirties, a young mom, doing way too much volunteer work for many organizations. A mentor took her to lunch and told her she’d be much more valuable if she focused her energy on her unique contribution to the world. She became a Positive Psychologist, and wrote books, lectured, and continues to contribute incredible value to so many people!
How to get unstuck and find your passion and purpose
Take a mindful pause and ask yourself:
- What am I interested in bringing forth in the world?
- What is the dream?
- How can I get help?
- What’s the path I need to take?
- What would it be like to explore my dream?
“We need support. It’s hard to do this work alone. A therapist, coach, or good buddies can help us gain clarity.”
Finding Meaning, Purpose, and Joy
Maria’s two children are on the path to finding what they want to create in the world. We speak about not having to know who you’ll be when you grow up. We follow the breadcrumbs to our right path.
If you want to find your purpose, Positive Psychologist, Tal Ben Shachar, has a model for finding what you love. It’s called The Meaning, Pleasure, Strengths (MPS) Process.
Three circles intersect:
Circle one: What do you love?
Circle two: What are your strengths and skills?
Circle three: What’s meaningful to you in the world?
See what’s at the intersection of all three circles, and that gives you clues as to what will give your life meaning and purpose.
Often that part of us comes in a still small voice. With mindfulness, we learn to listen to that voice that keeps bringing us back there again. We also need permission to not know, to experiment and find out. Can we find a way to enjoy the day as we’re moving forward?
My life won’t be happy unless…
So many of us think we won’t be happy until we’re married, get the right job, etc.
“Significance doesn’t come from the external. It comes from within.”
Setting healthy boundaries
We need the capacity to say yes and no to the right things. We need both. Too much of one or the other doesn’t work. She compares it to an infinity loop, yes and no working together. If you’re low on either yes’s or no’s, it makes the other side high. She talks about her yes’s and no’s. She has 2 ½ writing projects, and she’s saying no to anything that doesn’t fit well into her schedule and lift up her energy.
Plans for the future
She’s been planning her 60th birthday year celebration. Joy and generosity are two themes this year. What does it mean to her now? In her work, she’s being invited into conversations about how as a community, state, and country we can find resilience during these difficult times.
Connect with Maria!
FB: Maria Sirois
LinkedIn: Maria Sirois