January 30, 2022

CJ Masciantonio

Mind of Mash: Finding Fulfillment


So far, we’re about a full month into the new year. While many people are going strong with their resolutions, surely others are either struggling with— or have dropped — them. Staying committed to one’s goals can be a difficult process. Sometimes goals feel forced—they’re objectives we feel we “need” to reach.

Take a minute to think about this important question:

Are you finding happiness and fulfillment because it’s what’s best for you, or because you’re telling yourself that the idea of it is what’s best for you?

I find that I make the most progress when I shape goals into what fits my lifestyle and makes sense for me. I apply this to my personal health, daily habits, relationships, work, and more.

Three Tips to Help You Look at the Bigger Picture

1. There’s More to Things than Meets the Eye

I find it very helpful to dig deeper into why I want to reach my goals. This means considering more than just what they look like at face value.

For example, think about people who take on dieting. Many people see dieting as a temporary road to achieving a new figure. While the result is enticing, it will be very hard for someone to achieve that goal if they see it as a plan that has a beginning and an end. In reality, attaining a fitter physique may require some major lifestyle changes.

A healthier alternative in this scenario would be for the person to think about what lifestyle choices they are currently making. It can be beneficial for them to look at changing their eating habits as an opportunity to live a healthier life now and forever rather than as merely a path to take off a few pounds.

You can apply a similar mindset to any objective you want to achieve.

2. Find More Meaning in Your Work and Share that Meaning with Your Clients!

It can be easy to feel burned out or undervalued. Even if your job is something you may not be entirely passionate about, there are ways to feel more like an asset to yourself and your team.

For starters, think about your own values as an individual. Now, create a personal mission each day at work based on those values. Have that mission be something that defines how you are going to act — regardless of external circumstances. Keep this in mind to create a sense of purpose and pride in what you do.

If you’re still struggling to find meaning in your work, consider all the options you have for finding a new career path. Then, create a plan. You may face a long road ahead, but it will undoubtedly be a more fulfilling one.

To further expand on this topic, let’s look at my work. As a guitar teacher and a multimedia freelancer, I am lucky to have work that fulfills my creative desires. If you’re like me and deal with clients on a regular basis, it can be gratifying to connect with them on a level that meets their needs in the best ways possible.

For example, when I teach a new guitar student, I often start with the fundamentals, which sets up a course for success. After that, I find out more about what music they like and shift my teaching approach based on their interests. Instead of teaching mundane songs and techniques they may find uninspiring, I take examples of songs or styles that my student enjoys and turn them into fun practice exercises. Doing so motivates them and (hopefully) sparks their desire to continue their guitar journey.

Making accommodations for your clients’ needs will make them appreciative and happier in the long run. I know it does the same for me as well!

3. Avoid Distractions that Destroy Progress

Many of us, including me, are guilty of creating destructive habits that distract us from making progress. Short-term fixes like video games, dating apps, alcohol, and recreational drugs are ways people sometimes cope when feeling uninspired, bored, or unfulfilled. Our time is better spent working on ourselves and the passions that make us feel alive. Happiness, first and foremost, should come from within— not from someone else or something that prevents us from making progress.

I recommend that you think about what brings you true gratification and a sense of accomplishment and write down your daily habits.

Do your habits create days filled with opportunity and growth? Are there lifestyle changes you can adopt to help make your daily habits bring you more satisfaction and fuel your progress?

It’s never too late to travel the road to success and fulfillment. Better late than never in starting your journey!

If you can’t think of anything you’re currently doing that brings you positive feelings, consider exploring new hobbies or fields that might change that. When COVID-19 hit, my music career took a major step backward. My sheer curiosity led to my interest in multimedia. My decision to pursue it created a whole new career path to supplement my workload and create yet another fulfilling route in life!

Final Thoughts

Life is too short to go through the motions and to wait for happiness. The road to fulfillment starts with us. We are the masters of our fate.

If you’re hitting rock bottom this 2022, then the only direction to go is up! Start with the tips I’ve provided, and let the domino effect commence for a healthier, better, and more fulfilled you! 

Your turn! What in life keeps you fulfilled?

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